1 Wednesday, 26 January 2011
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
6 JUDGE KWON: Good morning everyone. Good morning, Mr. Robinson.
7 MR. ROBINSON: Good morning, Mr. President. May I introduce to
8 you Jade Werkmeister, who is from the University of Melbourne in
9 Australia, who is joining us this morning.
10 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
11 If the witness could take the solemn declaration, please.
12 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
13 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
14 WITNESS: MARCUS HELGERS
15 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Helgers.
16 Yes, Ms. Sutherland.
17 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Examination by Ms. Sutherland:
19 Q. Good morning. Can you please state your full name.
20 A. My full name is Marcus Martinus Emanuel Helgers.
21 Q. And in 1995 you held the rank of captain in the Dutch air force;
22 is that correct?
23 A. That is correct, ma'am.
24 Q. As we discussed, part of your evidence in this case will be
25 submitted in writing, and we first need to deal with the formalities
1 associated with that submission.
2 A. Mm-hmm.
3 Q. You provided a signed statement to members of the Office of the
4 Prosecutor in August 1995; is that correct?
5 A. That is correct, ma'am.
6 MS. SUTHERLAND: If I could have 65 ter number 22677 on the
7 screen, please.
8 Q. Mr. Helgers, is that your statement at the bottom of the page 1?
9 A. That's my signature.
10 Q. Oh, thank you. Sorry. Is it right that you've had an
11 opportunity to review this statement?
12 A. That's correct.
13 Q. And there's one correction and a couple of clarifications that
14 you wish to make.
15 A. Yes, indeed, as I've made them in your presence last Monday.
16 Q. In the fourth paragraph on page 4.
17 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we could go to page 4, Mr. Registrar.
18 Q. The reference to the 16th of June, 1995, should read 18 June 1995
19 as is stated in the paragraph above?
20 A. That's correct.
21 Q. With respect to the clarifications in the first paragraph on
22 page 3, there's a reference to Major Westlund being forced to contact
23 UN headquarters Sarajevo?
24 A. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.
25 Q. And you wish to state that you no longer remember and therefore
1 cannot be sure whether he did that contact from Jahorina or from Pale; is
2 that right?
3 A. That's correct.
4 Q. And in the second paragraph on page 3, there's a reference to
5 being taken from a point at Jahorina a distance of 5, 6, or 700 metres to
6 the radar station. You wish to clarify that you cannot be sure of the
7 distance in metres but that it took you approximately 15 minutes walking
8 in the snow?
9 A. That's correct.
10 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters kindly ask that Ms. Sutherland
11 slow down a bit, please.
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: My apologies to the interpreter.
13 Q. With that correction and the clarifications, do you confirm that
14 the statement is accurate?
15 A. The statement is accurate with the clarifications.
16 Q. If I were to ask you today about the same series of events, would
17 you provide the same information to the Trial Chamber?
18 A. Yes, with one remark: That it has been 16 years ago, so it might
19 be that some small details I do not recall as clearly as I did 16 years
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I seek to tender 65 ter 22677 into
23 JUDGE KWON: Very well. It is admitted.
24 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2117, Your Honours.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: With Your Honours' leave, I will now read a
1 summary of the witness's written evidence.
2 In 1995, in April, Marcus Helgers was a captain in the Dutch
3 air force stationed near Kasindo, south of Sarajevo, as a United Nations
4 Military Observer, that is, an UNMO. On the 26th of May, 1995, the
5 witness together with five other UNMOs deployed to the same observation
6 post, were ceased by armed soldiers and driven to a guard post in
7 Grbavica. There they were forced to change into civilian clothes. The
8 six UNMOs were then driven to the police station in Pale, then to a
9 cafe bar in Pale, and subsequently taken to the Jahorina radar station
10 where he was held by the Bosnian Serb forces for 20 days. While being
11 held, the witness received threats on his life. At one point, the
12 deputy team leader of the six UNMOs was forced to contact UNMO
13 headquarters in Sarajevo and tell them that the VRS would kill some of
14 them if NATO continued with air-strikes.
15 Early the following morning, 27 May 1995, the witness was taken
16 with another UNMO to the roof of the tower near the main radar dome where
17 he was held for approximately two hours. UNMOs were taken to the tower
18 in shifts of two men for approximately two hours each. After being held
19 at Jahorina radar station for 20 days, he was then taken with two UNMOs
20 to a military police station in Pale and then to the military barracks at
21 Koran-Pale where they were detained for a further four days.
22 Their release from Pale on 18 June 1995 was overseen by
23 Lieutenant-Colonel Indjic. Mr. Koljevic spoke to the military observers
24 on that day and also Lieutenant-Colonel Indjic spoke. Indjic then signed
25 a document handing them over to the security forces. The UNMOs were then
1 driven by bus to Pale where they met with the "security chief of
2 Milosevic." They were taken to Zvornik and then on to Novi Sad.
3 The following day, 19 June 1995, the witness was taken from
4 Novi Sad to Belgrade airport where he flew to Zagreb.
5 That concludes the summary, Your Honour. I would now like to
6 clarify a few details and ask some specific questions about the witness's
8 Q. Mr. Helgers, what date were you first deployed in Bosnia?
9 A. I -- I entered the mission in Zagreb on the 26th of April. I was
10 flown to Sarajevo around or on the 1st of May.
11 Q. Where were you assigned?
12 A. I was to be stationed at the enclave of Zepa, but due to the fact
13 that at that moment it was not possible to -- to deploy me in that area,
14 I was temporarily assigned to the UNMO station in Kasindo.
15 Q. How many were in your team and if you recall what nationalities?
16 A. The team leader was Spanish, the deputy team leader was Swedish
17 and the total amount of people they changed. At the moment, on 26th,
18 when I was taken hostage, we were six.
19 Q. And what were your duties?
20 A. Our duties was to -- to monitor the cease-fire, monitor the
21 weapon collection points, to report on any shelling coming in or going
22 out and generally investigate any reports about shooting incidents.
23 Q. Were you armed?
24 A. We were not armed.
25 Q. At some point was your freedom of movement restricted?
1 A. Almost constantly during the period, so the fact is we did very
2 little patrolling because, virtually from day one, there were very severe
3 movement restrictions.
4 Q. On page 2 of your statement, you state that on the 26th of May,
5 the deputy to the local battalion commander --
6 A. Mm-hmm.
7 Q. -- came to the observation post at around 1330 hours?
8 A. That's correct.
9 Q. Do you recall what he said?
10 A. He said that there had been some air-strikes and that we were
11 given house arrests and that we were to stay in the -- in the office.
12 Q. You also said on that page that he came back at around
13 1500 hours.
14 A. Mm-hmm.
15 Q. What, if anything, do you recall him saying when he came back the
16 second time?
17 A. I have to make one clarification. I'm not completely sure if it
18 was a deputy commander or a security officer. I do know what he said
19 quite clearly because that's engraved in my memory. He said there had
20 been more -- more strikes, and that we were having house arrests and that
21 we should not go outside, and that if we were to go outside, we would be
23 Q. From there you were taken by two armed soldiers to a guard post
24 at Grbavica. That's on page 2.
25 A. That was later. It was at around 4.00 or something later.
1 Q. Did these soldiers identify themselves?
2 A. No. However, they were dressed in partial uniforms and -- well,
3 sufficiently to identify them as Bosnian Serb soldiers.
4 Q. Can you briefly describe for the Chamber what occurred there.
5 A. At the moment that I was taken hostage or --
6 Q. When you were at the guard post at Grbavica.
7 A. Well, we were put in a, well, in a basement at the -- the command
8 post was a basement of an apartment block. We were put there under guard
9 and then -- it was command post. People started making phone calls. I
10 don't know any Serbian-Croatian. However, I could hear that it was about
11 us and about uniforms. Then we were forced to take off all of our
12 uniforms and we were forced to take on civilian clothes. In my case a
13 training suit that I bought in Zagreb, and the other colleagues, whatever
14 private clothes they had, except Major Bello Abdul Razak from Nigeria.
15 He did not have any civilian clothes. He was forced to put on a former
16 Yugoslav Army uniform.
17 Q. What did you think was going to happen to you at that time?
18 A. Because I was quite afraid, worried to be sure, we were very
19 close to the confrontation line and the thought had occurred to me was
20 that since it was very irregular being taken off -- that we had to take
21 off our uniform, that we were going to be sent over the confrontation
22 line, presumably to be shot by the opposing party.
23 Q. I want to move now to a time after you arrived in Pale from
25 A. Mm-hmm.
1 Q. You stated on page 2 of your statement that when you were taken
2 to Pale, that you met some UNMOs from the 7 Lima team who had been
3 captured earlier.
4 A. Mm-hmm.
5 Q. You also said there was a young Bosnian Serb soldier who spoke
6 good English.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Do you recall what that Bosnian Serb soldier said?
9 A. Very clearly. He said that we were hostages for the
10 Bosnian Serbs, that we were going to be station -- brought to Jahorina
11 radar station where we were going to be used as human shields. He
12 further told us that if there was any air-strike by NATO, one of us would
13 be shot, and that if there was an air-strike at the radar station and any
14 of us were to survive, we would all be shot.
15 Q. When you said that you were going to be taken to Jahorina and
16 used as human shields, what did you understand this to be mean?
17 A. For me it was quite clear that we were going to be placed at the
18 station so that if a NATO air attack were to take place, we would be hit,
19 too, and furthermore, as he stated, that if there was an air-strike at
20 another location in Bosnia on Bosnia Serb troops, or forces, or units,
21 that one of us would be shot. And anyway, if there was an attack on
22 radio station and we were to be survive, we would all be executed
24 THE INTERPRETER: Could counsel make a pause after the witness
25 has answered. Thank you.
1 MS. SUTHERLAND:
2 Q. You mentioned in your statement that you were then taken in a
3 vehicle and up to Jahorina.
4 A. Mm-hmm.
5 Q. You have mentioned in your statement that a number of you were
6 mistreated in the vehicle.
7 A. Mm-hmm. Yes.
8 Q. And then you had to walk a certain distance. Were any of you
9 mistreated along the way?
10 A. In the -- when -- at the foot of the radio station was a sort of
11 hotel where I was told it had been used for -- for Olympic Games earlier.
12 We were handed over from the regular car. We were into a military bus,
13 small bus, by -- and we were guarded by -- transferred to the guard of
14 three Bosnian Serb guards. One of them was quite drunk. The other one
15 was not sober. You could see it in their behaviour. You could smell it
16 on them. And the driver was at least more or less sober, I think. In
17 the car they started asking questions, and when Major Bello Abdul Razak
18 from Nigeria, when he didn't answer quickly enough, they hit him with the
19 butt of a Kalashnikov rifle in his head from behind. And later on,
20 Major Westlund, from Sweden, he -- because he didn't answer correctly or
21 quickly enough he was also butted, but in the shoulder. Later on when we
22 left the car and had to walk to the radar station, we were kicked a few
23 times, but not very extremely hard, just to force us along.
24 Q. You said that when you got there you were taken to the barracks
25 and taken to a room.
1 A. Mm-hmm.
2 Q. And the next morning, this is on page 3, that is the 27th of May,
3 1995, the two of you were taken to a tower 15 metres from the main radar
4 dome. Can you just describe the -- the area?
5 A. Okay. It was -- it was a mountain top, quite high. I do
6 remember very clearly that when we came -- as I told you, we had to walk
7 the last part. The area was largely covered with snow, not completely.
8 In fact, when we left 20 days later, it was still some patches of snow
10 The radar station at the bottom, about 200 metres below the domes
11 themselves, there was sort of barracks which was used as sleeping area,
12 command post, I don't know exactly. Then there was a winding road up --
13 upwards towards the radar itself. There were two domes, big, white,
14 multi-facetted domes, a big one and a small one. There was an entrance
15 to the area just below the main -- the main radar dome in which we were
16 forced to enter, and we were taken to the first room on the right side.
17 What I do remember quite clearly is that there was also sort of
18 guard tower about 15 metres' distance from the main dome, and when we
19 were taken to -- to the radar and put in -- sort of in -- under the main
20 radar dome, afterwards at -- two of us at a turn were taken outside and
21 put on -- in my case on the top of the radar -- of the guard tower, which
22 is very close to the main radar dome.
23 Q. On page 3 you said that Pale Television arrived with some UNMOs
24 for filming.
25 A. Mm-hmm.
1 Q. Did you see these UNMOs?
2 A. I did not see these UNMOs because at that time I was underground,
3 under the radar dome, and two other colleagues at that time at the watch
4 tower, they were taken in and they told me they had seen Pale TV arrive
5 with some -- some uniformed UNMOs.
6 Q. I now want you to view a brief video-clip.
7 A. Mm-hmm.
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: The first part of the clip is 65 ter number
10 [Video-clip played]
11 MS. SUTHERLAND: Pause there.
12 Q. Do you recognise anything in that shot? We've paused at 40:57.
13 We started the clip at 40:43 for the record.
14 A. Well, it was this radar dome or one -- well, the almost identical
15 twin of it.
16 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we could play it again -- continue.
17 [Video-clip played]
18 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Sutherland, can I intervene. Is it your plan to
19 do without transcript, without those being read out?
20 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour. It's the visual that I want
21 the witness to look at.
22 If we could continue, and if we could pause it at 41:40, please.
23 [Video-clip played]
24 MS. SUTHERLAND:
25 Q. Do you recognise who is in that shot?
1 A. Yes, it's a Brazilian UNMO named Harley or Harvey. I recall him
2 very clearly because I met him later on in Pale when the UNMOs were
3 collected for later release.
4 Q. And is Harley his first or last name, do you know?
5 A. As far as I know it's his last name but I'm not sure. I knew him
6 as Harley or Harvey.
7 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we could continue, please.
8 [Video-clip played]
9 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we can pause at 42:49, please.
10 [Video-clip played]
11 MS. SUTHERLAND:
12 Q. Do you recognise the gentleman in that shot?
13 A. Well, he's Polish, but I don't, I don't recall him.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we can continue and then pause at 43:06.
16 [Video-clip played]
17 MS. SUTHERLAND:
18 Q. What, if anything, do you recognise in that shot?
19 A. Well, as I told you, that's the radar dome. It's the one I was
20 held at or, well, its twin. What you can also see, I think, in the
21 background are the snow patches that I was mentioning earlier.
22 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we could play again and pause at 43:14,
24 [Video-clip played]
25 THE WITNESS: That's -- that's the smaller dome I was telling you
1 about. There was a bigger dome and there was a smaller dome.
2 MS. SUTHERLAND:
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we could continue, please.
5 [Video-clip played]
6 MS. SUTHERLAND:
7 Q. Thank you. The next clip I wish to show you is 65 ter 40202F,
9 [Video-clip played]
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: And if we could pause it there, please. That's
11 paused at 44:01.
12 Q. Do you recognise who is in that shot?
13 A. Yes, that's my colleague, Dutch UNMO. Captain Wilko Ramarkus
14 [phoen] from the Dutch air force.
15 Q. And what was Ramarkus chained to, do you know?
16 A. He told me he had been chained to a Bosnian Serb aircraft shelter
17 in or near Banja Luka.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I seek to tender both of those
20 clips. The first clip will be shown with another witness on Friday, and
21 at that point we will be using the transcript.
22 JUDGE KWON: You are tendering the entire video-clip or the
23 D part refers to the part you've shown -- you have shown today.
24 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes. I want to tender both clips, the clip
25 of -- at the dome and the clip of the Dutch UNMO that we can see on the
1 screen now. That's 40202D and 40202F.
2 JUDGE KWON: And we don't need the time clip because only that
3 part will be tendered. That's my understanding. Is my understanding
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Both will be admitted.
7 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibits P2143 and P2144, respectively,
8 Your Honours.
9 MS. SUTHERLAND:
10 Q. Mr. Helgers, in your statement at page 3, you said that you were
11 held at Jahorina for 20 days, and the room where you were held in, how
12 far was this from the radar tower? You may have mentioned it earlier
13 this morning?
14 A. That depends on how you -- if you had to walk it, it goes maybe
15 40, 50 metres, but it was -- the radar dome, as you could see, was on the
16 top and below it there was an entrance into -- to the area. I didn't see
17 the complete area, of course, because we were taken on the inside in the
18 first door on the right. Walking distance would have been less than
19 50 metres. I mean, horizontal or vertical distance would have been
20 20 metres, 25, 30 maybe.
21 Q. Who appeared to you to be in charge at the radar station?
22 A. There was a sublieutenant who was in charge. His name was
23 Trafkovic. We met him on the 26th, in the evening, when we arrived at
24 the barracks at the foot of the -- of the radar domes, and he warned us
25 at that time, please, that he was very sorry about the situation, that he
1 warned us not to try to escape especially since the area around the radar
2 station was mined. And later on, I don't recall which day, we were taken
3 downstairs to the barracks at the foot of the radar station, radar dome,
4 where we met with him. He asked us how we were doing and I remember
5 playing two games of chess with him.
6 Q. And did -- what, if anything, did he say to you about your
8 A. He stated that, as I told you, he was sorry about the situation
9 and he hoped the situation would be resolved and that we would be
10 released quickly. Also, what I remember from the first day, that we had
11 been taken as an order from -- from the Bosnian Serb president.
12 Q. And that was something that he told you on the first day?
13 A. Yes, in the evening. I want to rephrase that. I don't recall
14 exactly he said Bosnian Serb president or Bosnian Serb command.
15 Q. You stated on page 3 that on the 14th of June, three of you were
16 taken from the Jahorina radar station. Who took you, and where did you
18 A. The 13th you mean? The 13th of June.
19 Q. Yes. Yes.
20 A. Okay. The three of us which were left at that time, we were
21 taken to a -- well, it looks to be a sort of hotel complex where we met
22 Captain Manzoor, who was one of the members our team which together --
23 he, together with Major Westlund, had been separated from us quite
24 quickly after the event, and I was given to understand that he had
25 been -- been used as a human shield at the control centre for the radar
1 station. And after we collected Captain Manzoor we were driven to Pale,
2 where we met the other UNMOs.
3 Q. And on page 3 of your statement you say on Tuesday, the
4 13th of June, 1995, Major --
5 A. Wojtasiak.
6 Q. -- Wojtasiak was released.
7 A. Mm-hmm.
8 Q. And the following day --
9 A. Yes, so it must have been the 14th.
10 Q. -- the 14th, the remaining three of you were taken to the hotel
12 A. Mm-hmm. Yes, so it must have been 14th.
13 Q. You said Captain Vojvodic was in charge at the barracks. How did
14 you know his name?
15 A. Well, he gave his name, and some of the other UNMOs who had been
16 longer in -- in -- in the barracks, they had given his name too.
17 Q. Now, on page 4 of your statement you describe the events on
18 Sunday, the 18th of June, 1995, as to how you came to be released --
19 A. Mm-hmm.
20 Q. -- from Bosnia when you met Koljevic and Lieutenant-Colonel
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. So I won't go into that now. I'd like you to look at a map,
24 65 ter 23076. This is a map which -- the map that will appear on the
25 screen has been prepared by the Office of the Prosecutor using
1 65 ter 19082 as the base map. Overlaid on this map are the different
2 locations in Bosnia where you were held during the period 26 May 1995 to
3 19 June.
4 A. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.
5 Q. You had an opportunity to review this map --
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. -- in preparation of your testimony?
8 A. Yes, I did.
9 Q. Does this map accurately reflect your movements during the period
10 you were held by the Bosnian Serb forces?
11 A. It does.
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I tender this map for admission.
13 JUDGE KWON: That is admitted.
14 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2145, Your Honours.
15 MS. SUTHERLAND:
16 Q. And we can see the -- Kasindo marked with a -- with a black dot
17 and then to Grbavica, over to Pale, down to Jahorina radar station, back
18 to Pale, and then you were taken over to -- in the direction of --
19 A. Novi Sad.
20 Q. Novi Sad. Thank you. I've finished with that map. There are a
21 number of documents I wish to show and I want to ask you whether certain
22 aspects of these documents are consistent with your experiences.
23 A. Mm-hmm.
24 MS. SUTHERLAND: If I could have 65 ter 09404 on the screen,
1 Q. This is a Main Staff document from the Army of Republika Srpska,
2 dated the 26th of May, 1995. There are a number of targets listed there,
3 alleged NATO targets. Are these targets consistent with where you and
4 other UNMOs were subsequently held as hostages?
5 A. Just for myself, I was held at the radar station, and I know
6 about my -- my colleague Rabakus [phoen] because he was held at an
7 air base. Two of my colleagues from the same team, Major Westlund and
8 Captain Manzoor, were taken to a command post or radar control post, as I
9 told you before, so that it is consistent.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I seek to tender this document into
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes. It will be admitted.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P2146, Your Honours.
14 MS. SUTHERLAND: If the next document could be brought up,
15 65 ter 09172.
16 Q. Again, this is a Main Staff Army of Republika Srpska document,
17 dated the 27th of May, 1995, which discusses the VRS assessment of where
18 NATO will concentrate their operations, ammunition dumps, fire positions
19 of anti-aircraft defence equipment, artillery, armoured mechanism units
20 and command posts. Again, are these areas consistent with where you and
21 other UNMOs were placed at that time?
22 A. As I told you, I don't know the exact locations of where all the
23 UNMOs were placed, but as far as my recollection is and my personal
24 experience, we were placed at military strategic or vital locations.
25 Q. And I think at the time this -- this document was received you
1 were, in fact, at the radar station; is that right?
2 A. On the 27th, I was already on the radar station. As I told you,
3 I was taken very early on 27th in the morning from the barracks at the
4 foot of the radio station towards the radio station itself.
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I seek to tender this into
7 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. Let the record reflect we're
8 being very generous at this point but we don't object.
9 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes, we'll admit this.
10 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2147, Your Honours.
11 MS. SUTHERLAND: If I could have Exhibit P00893 on the screen,
13 Q. We see this is dated the 17th of June, 1995. It's an order from
14 the president of the republic, Dr. Karadzic, regarding the release of the
15 remaining UNPROFOR and military observers.
16 A. Mm-hmm.
17 Q. First, you can confirm that you were released on the
18 18th of June, at least from Bosnia?
19 A. That's correct.
20 Q. And in the second paragraph, it -- or order number -- point
21 number 2, it refers to the return of personal weapons to UNPROFOR and
22 military observers.
23 A. Mm-hmm.
24 Q. You testified earlier that UNMOs were unarmed?
25 A. I did not have any weapon bigger than probably a pocket knife,
1 which was taken from me, and as to the return of personal effects, my
2 personal effects were, well, confiscated when I was taken hostage and I
3 never got them back.
4 Q. Finally, Mr. Helgers, what impact, if any, has the period that
5 you were held by the Bosnian Serb forces had upon you?
6 A. At the moment of the -- of the -- of the -- the events, that was
7 quite stressful, and my reaction was that -- was that I put off my
8 emotion, more or less, till arriving on the -- I think it was the 19th in
9 Zagreb, when I entered the mess I had the shakes for about two minutes.
10 After which I had -- well, all my muscles hurt for about a week.
11 Afterwards I had some sleepless nights about two months later. Then I
12 did not have any problems until about 2000 -- 2000, 2001 -- 2001, in
13 fact, when I became quite stressed, recurrences of the events,
14 sleeplessness, irritation, lessened performance, and I was later
15 diagnosed by Dutch military that I had post-traumatic stress disorder.
16 I've been treated for that quite successfully, I think. I had some small
17 recurrences later but they are minor.
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you. That concludes my
19 examination-in-chief, Your Honour. The 65 ter number listed as the first
20 additional exhibit in the 92 ter notification is technically an
21 associated exhibit because it was referred to in the statement. However,
22 I don't seek to tender that document.
23 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Thank you, Ms. Sutherland.
24 Now, Mr. Karadzic, it's for you to cross-examine Mr. Helgers.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Good morning,
1 Your Excellencies. Good morning to everybody.
2 Cross-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
3 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Helgers. First of all, I
4 would like to thank you for having met with the Defence. I hope this
5 will help us in our effort to be very precise and very expeditious. I
6 would like to thank you for your kindness in that respect.
7 You are a captain in the Dutch air force. Am I right?
8 A. At the moment of my -- my taking hostage, I was a captain in the
9 air force. At the moment I'm a major in the Dutch Marechaussee, which is
10 a gendarmerie force.
11 Q. Thank you. What was your task? What was your mission at your
12 observation post in Kasindo?
13 A. As I stated earlier towards the Prosecution, my task were -- our
14 task, our tasks were to observe the cease-fire, monitor the weapon
15 collection points, and report on any incoming or outgoing shelling, and
16 investigate shooting reports.
17 Q. Thank you. While you were there for a month prior to the event
18 in question, did you have good relations with the Serbian officers and
19 the local population? What was your relationship with them?
20 A. The -- I did not meet any special hostility. Having said that, I
21 must note that my contacts with Serbian military and Serbian civilians
22 were very limited due to restriction of movement. Furthermore, I was not
23 team leader or deputy team leader in charge of negotiations or dealing
24 with Serbian authorities, police, anyway, or military, sorry. And
25 furthermore, I was placed at the Kasindo station temporarily because I
1 was -- they planned for me to go to Zepa at a later state.
2 Q. Thank you. Did you know that there was a major Muslim offensive
3 ongoing, an offensive which was launched on the 1st of May and
4 intensified after the 15th of May?
5 A. I do remember that there have been some very -- very -- well,
6 quite intense shelling during a few days during my stay in Kasindo. When
7 I came in Sarajevo it was quite quiet, and afterwards it heated up quite
8 quickly, yes.
9 Q. Thank you. In your statement, on page 2 you say that on that
10 day, around 1330 hours, Serbian soldiers came, and the local commander
11 told you about NATO air-strikes, and that for your own safety you were
12 supposed to stay in house arrest where you would be guarded. Is that
14 A. The deputy commander, as I recall, to be quite clear, I had not
15 met him before he was pointed out to me by colleagues as being the deputy
16 commander. He stated that there had been some air-strikes and that
17 indeed we were to stay at the -- at our office.
18 Q. Thank you. An hour and a half later he arrived, and his attitude
19 towards you was somewhat different. In other words, something had
20 happened during that period which changed his attitude towards you. When
21 he arrived, he told you that there had been some more air-strikes; right?
22 A. I've read that in my statement, so that must be correct. It is
23 consistent with what I remember. One -- one remark: As I told you this
24 morning -- or I told the Prosecution this morning, I think it was the
25 intelligence chief of -- of the unit, of the security chief, he was very
1 unfriendly. He told us that -- that's from further incidents. It might
2 have been the air-strikes. I don't exactly recall at this time. And he
3 told us very clearly that we were to stay inside. We were under house
4 arrest. We were to be guarded, and if we were to go outside we would be
6 Q. Thank you. And then you were at Grbavica, and you changed your
7 clothes. There is a fact on the one hand, and there is your
8 understanding of the fact on the other. Do you accept the possibility
9 that during your transport to Pale, you might have been faced with the
10 hostility or attacks on the part of civilians or renegades or any other
11 individuals who might have been angry as a result of those air-strikes,
12 and that the fact that you had to change your clothes was just a measure
13 to protect you from any such hostilities coming from the -- from such
15 A. I can only state that any comment about that would be, well,
16 speculation of my side. As I told you before, the -- the reactions of --
17 of the few Bosnian Serb people I met had been correct. In fact, our
18 landlord was quite upset when we were taken. About the -- being forced
19 to -- to take off our military clothes, that was clearly for me, although
20 I don't understand Serbo-Croatian, on orders. There were a lot of phone
21 calls about that. And in my opinion, it is totally inconsistent with
22 Geneva law or any other law about conduct in war.
23 Q. Thank you. It would have been even more against the
24 Geneva Conventions if somebody had noticed your white clothes during your
25 journey and if they had opened -- opened fire at you. Do you agree with
2 A. I was not wearing white clothes. I was wearing Dutch military
3 uniform with the UN distinctive markings on it. And as I told you
4 before, I don't have any reason to -- to expect -- suspect that. So it
5 would be speculation.
6 Q. Thank you. At that moment, you were told, and you mentioned the
7 president or the command earlier on, and during our interview you told us
8 that the local commander at Mount Jahorina, or even before that, told you
9 that you were a prisoner of war, and that resulted from the fact that the
10 previous night the president of the republic had stated on TV that
11 UNPROFOR members were prisoners of war taken by the Serb army; right?
12 A. The facts -- well, the statement that we were prisoners of war
13 was mentioned several times during the period I was taken hostage. To
14 me, in fact, I had quite some discussions with the guard at the radar
15 station because, in my opinion, we were hostages because we were not
16 being accorded the treatment due to prisoners of war in
17 Geneva Conventions, like being used as a human shield, having to take off
18 our uniforms, being denied protective measures, et cetera, being denied
19 access to the Red Cross.
20 There was quite a discussion about that, but in my opinion, the
21 guards were told -- and I said they told me and us we were to be
22 prisoners of war, yes.
23 Q. Thank you. During our conversation, we agreed that nobody had
24 told you that you would be released if the air-strikes stopped; right?
25 A. That's correct. It was never specifically mentioned. Several
1 times we mentioned that there were negotiations ongoing, and as I said
2 before, several people, they stated that they hoped the situation would
3 be resolved quickly.
4 Q. Thank you. Do you remember that after 16 hours you were
5 suspected of having co-operated with NATO? Allegedly, UNPROFOR staff
6 played the role of forward air controllers which selected targets and
7 aimed at those targets with lasers. I'm not asking you whether you
8 actually did that. I'm asking you whether those who had captured you
9 suspected you of such doings?
10 A. With the 16 hours I presume you mean on the 26th, after 16 hours
11 when we were taken hostage. I don't know the exact time and date, but I
12 do recall that several times it has been -- we were accused or
13 accusations were being brought up that UNMOs had, in fact, operated as
14 forward air controllers.
15 Q. Thank you. Did your affiliation to the air force of the
16 Dutch military support their suspicions?
17 A. Not especially by me, because in my group of UNMOs, there was,
18 for instance, also a Polish fighter pilot, or former fighter pilot. I
19 can only state that I had never been involved nor had any training in
20 forward air controlling and I never had any equipment. I never saw of my
21 colleagues being involved in that.
22 Q. Thank you. I'm not accusing you. I'm just asking you whether
23 such suspicions were every brought up, whether those who had captured you
24 ever accused you of such things?
25 A. As I stated before, yes, the accusation has come up several
2 Q. Thank you very much. I would like to thank you once again for
3 having met up with the Defence and for having come to testify here, and
4 this brings my cross-examination to an end. Thank you.
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Sutherland, do you have any re-examination?
6 MS. EDGERTON: Just one question, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, please carry on.
8 Re-examination by Ms. Sutherland:
9 Q. Mr. Helgers, at page 21 of the transcript today, Mr. Karadzic
10 told you that there was a major Muslim offensive launched on the
11 1st of May and it intensified on the 15th of May, and you said, yes,
12 there was intense shelling.
13 A. Mm-hmm.
14 Q. Can you just describe what you witnessed as far as outgoing and
15 incoming shells or other fire was concerned in relation to that period?
16 A. Yes. In general there were almost daily, once or twice there was
17 shelling from the Serb side. There was a hilltop quite close to our
18 radar station -- to our observation post, towards the city, and very
19 rarely have I witnessed impacts into our area of responsibility of -- of
20 any form of shelling other than small-arms fire.
21 There was one period, I don't know -- recall the exact dates,
22 when there was very intense shelling, but most of that time we did report
23 incoming and outgoing shelling which was more incoming than more
24 outgoing, of course, but we were in shelters at that time because
25 situation was quite dangerous.
1 Q. And just to be clear, when you say that very rarely have you
2 witness the impacts into our area of responsibility, any form of shelling
3 other than small-arms fire, which side would that have been from?
4 A. I do remember three mortar grenades -- well, in fact, I saw them.
5 I heard them and saw them exploding in the area of one of the nearby Serb
6 barracks. That's three shells I recall very clearly, because that was at
7 the start of one of the major shelling -- well, exchanges in that period.
8 Q. And so --
9 A. Most -- most shelling, I mean, obviously in this case, was going
10 outside from our area towards Sarajevo, the Bosniak-held area.
11 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you. I have no further questions.
12 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Major Helgers. That concludes your
13 evidence. On behalf of the Tribunal I thank you for your coming to the
14 Tribunal to give it.
15 THE WITNESS: It was my pleasure, sir.
16 JUDGE KWON: Now you are free to go.
17 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
18 [The witness withdrew]
19 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, Ms. Edgerton will be leading the
20 next witness.
21 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
22 MS. SUTHERLAND: And I seek your leave to -- to --
23 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
24 MS. SUTHERLAND: -- leave.
25 JUDGE KWON: While we are bringing in the next witness, shall we
1 go into private session briefly.
2 [Private session] [Confidentiality partially lifted by order of Chamber]
22 MR. ROBINSON: Excuse me, Mr. President, if we could stay in
23 private session for one other matter. We're wondering about whether
24 we're likely to see Mr. Zecevic testifying next week because it's a big
25 witness and that requires a lot of preparation, and I know you've issued
1 a subpoena, but I was wondering if there was any likelihood that he would
2 testify next week or whether his testimony will take place at some other
4 JUDGE KWON: I take the -- whether or not he should testify via
5 videolink hasn't been decided yet.
6 MR. ROBINSON: That's correct, and we would really like to be
7 heard on that with that witness because we feel very strongly about that.
8 But apart from that, since there's so much uncertainty, we would wonder
9 if the Prosecutor or the Chamber has any information as to whether it's
10 likely that this witness will actually be testifying next week.
11 JUDGE KWON: Can you help us, Mr. Tieger, in that regard?
12 MR. TIEGER: I'm not aware of any departure from the
13 anticipated -- that is, any deviation from the intentions of the subpoena
14 and the selected dates, but I can -- as always, I'm happy to check
15 quickly and see if there's more current information.
16 JUDGE KWON: Yes. I would recommend you to do that. In
17 particular, given that the setting up the videolink would require a
18 substantial amount of time.
19 MR. TIEGER: Yes. I've just been informed there is no change
20 that we're aware of, and we're moving forward accordingly.
21 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Are you not minded to provide with
22 the -- provide the Chamber with the medical documents? I'll check into
23 that. I'm not clear about it. I'll come back to it if necessary.
25 [Open session]
1 JUDGE KWON: We are now in open session. Is it okay?
2 MR. TIEGER: I'll wait for an opportunity and respond to the
3 Court in private session.
4 JUDGE KWON: Why don't we do that. Let's go back to private
5 session briefly again.
6 [Private session] [Confidentiality partially lifted by order of Chamber]
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Tieger.
8 MR. TIEGER: I just wanted to clarify there was no intention to
9 signal any departure from the intention to submit medical documentation
10 if possible, and we have been in contact with the witness. I believe he
11 had informally received the -- the subpoena and that the anticipated
12 provision or at least the potential provision of such documentation was
13 anticipated after that receipt.
14 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Thank you.
15 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, before we go into public session
16 again, I would like to -- we really strongly oppose to the videolink for
17 this particular witness and would much prefer that he -- his testimony be
18 postponed until the time that he's able to come to The Hague and give his
19 testimony given the importance of his testimony, but I won't argue that
20 point now, but I would like to have the opportunity after the medical
21 information is submitted. It seems like it's being treated almost like
22 something that's automatic and we really don't want to --
23 JUDGE KWON: No, it will not be decided automatically.
24 MR. ROBINSON: Okay. Thank you very much.
2 [Open session]
3 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, if we're in open session and on the
4 topic of videolink, I note that we received yesterday a motion for
5 videolink for Witness KDZ041, and I would like indicate to the Chamber
6 that we don't oppose that motion.
7 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
8 [The witness entered court]
9 JUDGE KWON: We appreciate your co-operation, and that motion is
11 Good morning, Mr. Riley.
12 THE WITNESS: Good morning, sir.
13 JUDGE KWON: If you could take the solemn declaration, please.
14 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
15 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
16 WITNESS: JONATHON RILEY
17 JUDGE KWON: Please be seated.
18 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
19 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Edgerton.
20 MS. EDGERTON: Yes. Thank you. Good morning, Your Honours.
21 Examination by Ms. Edgerton:
22 Q. General Riley, first of all, could you give us your full name,
24 A. Jonathon Peter Riley.
25 Q. Now, General Riley, do you remember giving a statement to the
1 Office of the Prosecutor for this Tribunal back in April 1996 in relation
2 to your observations and experiences as commander of the -- of a
3 BritBat unit for UNPROFOR in 1995?
4 A. I do, and that took place in the barracks at Chepstow in
5 Great Britain.
6 Q. Did you review that statement prior to your testimony here today?
7 A. I did.
8 Q. And if you were asked the same questions today which gave rise to
9 the answers set out in that statement, would you give the same answers?
10 A. I would.
11 MS. EDGERTON: Then, Your Honours, could I ask that the statement
12 of General Riley, which is 65 ter 22685, from 15 April 1996, be marked as
13 a Prosecution exhibit, please.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That will be done.
15 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Exhibit P2148.
16 MS. EDGERTON: I'll now read a summary, then, of the written
17 evidence in P2148.
18 General Jonathon Riley commanded the 1st Battalion of the
19 Royal Welsh Fusiliers during their -- pardon me, during their deployment
20 to Gorazde from February to August 1995 as part of UNPROFOR's
21 peacekeeping mission. Their mission was to monitor and preserve the
22 integrity of the Gorazde total exclusion zone as well as to monitor and
23 report on the implementation of the 31 December 1994 cessation of
24 hostilities agreement by both sides.
25 Additionally, the BritBat unit in Gorazde was to support the safe
1 delivery of humanitarian aid into the area. The battalion deployed
2 three companies, two of which were located along the east and west banks
3 of the Drina River in interpositioned observation posts and check-points
4 along the confrontation line.
5 Following NATO air-strikes on 25 and 26 May, relations with the
6 Bosnian Serb forces in the immediate area deteriorated to the point where
7 contact almost ceased. The single exception was that the witness
8 received a radio message from the local commander, Radomir Furtula,
9 saying that he had been ordered by General Mladic that if NATO attacked
10 the Serbs again, he was to shell the BritBat camp as Britain was a NATO
12 During the morning of 28 May 1995, the witness was contacted via
13 Motorola by Furtula's interpreter asking him to attend what was described
14 as an important meeting at check-point 6 at 2.00 p.m. Aware that the
15 hostage-taking had started in Sarajevo, the witness declined. At around
16 2.00 p.m., he was informed that three of his observation posts on the
17 west bank of the Drina had been invaded by large numbers of heavily armed
18 Bosnian Serb soldiers and their crews were captured. Soon after,
19 observation posts on the east bank of the Drina were attacked. Two
20 withdrew under fire. The crew of a further third was captured. In
21 total, 33 British United Nations peacekeepers were taken hostage.
22 I'll just now, if I may, proceed with a few questions for
23 General Riley.
24 Q. And perhaps, General, we could begin by having you give us an
25 update on your military service since your tour in Bosnia in 1995.
1 A. Certainly. In 1996, I was promoted to Colonel and appointed as
2 the Chief of Staff of the 1st Armoured Division. I returned to
3 Bosnia-Herzegovina with NATO in 1998 as the deputy commander of division,
4 and I remained there, in Banja Luka, until October of 1999. The
5 following year I was appointed as the force commander -- the British
6 force commander in Sierra Leone, where I remained until 2001. For a
7 period then I was the director of studies at the Joint Services
8 Staff College. In 2003, I went to Iraq where I held two appointments for
9 two years. The second appointment, I was the divisional commander in
10 southern Iraq. I then moved as the senior British officer in
11 United States central command for two years. In late 2007, I went to
12 Afghanistan as the deputy commanding general of all NATO troops, and I
13 remained there until the beginning of 2009. Since June 2009, I've held
14 my current appointor as director general and master of the
15 Royal Armouries.
16 Q. Thank you. Now, to go back to the statement that you gave in
17 1996, I'd just like to ask you a couple of brief questions. During your
18 tour in Gorazde, did you become familiar with the Bosnian Serb military
19 units immediately surrounding the enclave?
20 A. I did. There were elements of three army corps of the
21 Bosnian Serb Army. There was a single brigade of the Drina Corps based
22 in the Serb municipality of Gorazde. To the north of the enclave there
23 were three brigades of the Romanija Sarajevo Corps with whom we had
24 little contact except for one of those brigades whose territory was --
25 was passed through by our line of supply. And on other bank of the
1 Drina River there were three brigades of Hercegovina Corps with whom we
2 had only contact with one brigade, the Rudo Brigade. These were all
3 light mountain brigades.
4 Q. When you say on the other bank of the Drina River, which bank are
5 you referring to, the east or the west bank?
6 A. I'm talking about on the -- the -- I'm so sorry. The
7 Romanija Sarajevo Corps and the Drina Corps were located on the bank of
8 the Drina on -- which was on the same side as the mountain of Sjenokos,
9 which I think is the west bank, and the Hercegovina Corps on the other
11 Q. Thank you. Now, just two small questions drawn from your written
13 On page 3, in the last paragraph on page 3, you indicated you had
14 been informed in advance of the air-strikes that occurred in late
15 May 1995. Do you by any chance recall, and I recognise this is far away
16 in time, but do you recall how far in advance that might have been?
17 A. It was no more than 24 hours.
18 Q. And a further question on page 5, the very last paragraph on
19 page 5 you state: "I learned that Mladic had come to visit early on,"
20 and then continued to describe some information related to that visit.
21 And I wonder if you could date that approximately in time for us.
22 A. I believe that it was on or about the 2nd of June.
23 Q. Now, I'd like to move to a number of documents relating to the
24 period that your written evidence dwells upon, but before doing that, I'd
25 just like to remind you that in your written evidence you noted that
1 immediately following the air-strikes at Pale on 25 and 26 May 1995,
2 relations with the Serb side deteriorated to the point where contact
3 almost ceased. Do you remember that?
4 A. I do.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 MS. EDGERTON: Then perhaps we could see 65 ter 20055, which is a
7 document from General Zivanovic of the Drina Corps command, dated
8 25 May 1995.
9 Q. Do you see a translation of that document in English on the
10 screen in front you, General?
11 A. I do.
12 Q. Now, this document, which is an order to the commands of all
13 Drina Corps units, reads, among other things, at paragraph 3 as follows:
14 "Prevent all movement of UNPROFOR vehicles and of all other
15 international organisations, whether individual or in convoy, and in case
16 of their appearance in the zone of responsibility of the Drina Corps,
17 immediately block them and inform the corps command which will issue
18 further orders."
19 Now, looking at the -- first of all, do you find this order
20 coincident in time with the reference I've just made to your written --
21 to your written statement, to your written evidence, where you say that
22 the Serb side deteriorated -- relations with the Serb side deteriorated
23 to the point where contact almost ceased?
24 A. Indeed, and it's the same day. So the order was implemented
25 clearly immediately.
1 Q. From what you've said, then, I take it you find that this order
2 is consistent with the situation at the time as you experienced it.
3 A. It is exactly the experience that I -- that we had.
4 Q. Thank you.
5 MS. EDGERTON: Could this be the next Prosecution exhibit,
6 please, Your Honours.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
8 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2149.
9 MS. EDGERTON:
10 Q. Now, relating to the hostage-taking of members of your battalion,
11 I'd like to know, as battalion commander, did you, following their
12 release, receive any information on their experiences?
13 A. I did. They were all interviewed following their release, and
14 their experiences were captured. They were all asked to fill in
15 questionnaires about their own particular experience, and I received
16 copies of those questionnaires and a summary of findings. And much later
17 on, I was able to meet them all, collectively and individually, at
18 Bugojno in Central Bosnia.
19 Q. When you met them did you then discuss what they had experienced
20 during their capture?
21 A. I did. I discussed matters with the one officer, the sergeant,
22 and the junior NCOs and more senior soldiers to get an idea of how they'd
23 been treated.
24 Q. Thank you. Now, you just mentioned that they had all been asked
25 to fill in questionnaires, and you received copies of those
2 MS. EDGERTON: Could I ask in that regard for 65 ter 19311,
3 page 2, please. Now go over to page 3, please.
4 Q. Now, when you referred to questionnaires, are these the sort of
5 questionnaires that you were referring to?
6 A. Yes. This, of course, is before the days of the internet, and
7 these reached me by fax.
8 Q. This is a questionnaire filled in by a Corporal Storey. Was he
9 one of the BritBat members who had been detained?
10 A. He was indeed.
11 Q. Do you recall what type of information was contained in these
13 A. It was a full summary as they recalled it of events from the
14 moment of confrontation until the moment of release. So it would have
15 contained what they saw of the events around their capture, what
16 subsequently happened to them, how they were treated, and where they were
17 taken, what they were told, and then the circumstances surrounding their
19 Q. And where did you learn that they had been taken?
20 A. I'm sorry, do you mean by that where they were taken and
21 physically placed themselves, or where was I when I learned?
22 Q. Sorry. You indicated in your evidence that some of the -- among
23 the information contained in these questionnaires was information as to
24 where they had been taken.
25 A. Indeed. They were all asked, as far as possible, to identify the
1 locations to which they had been taken, and this information was
2 summarised on a report by the debriefing team, and I recall seeing a map
3 which gave -- which gave an outline of where they had all been dropped
4 off. In addition, when I talked the matter over with the officer who had
5 been taken, he had, as far as possible, taken measures to pair up
6 young soldiers with more experienced soldiers or non-commissioned
7 officers and had then tried to remember where each of them was dropped.
8 Q. Thank you. Could we move on now, given that answer, to
9 65 ter 19301, please.
10 MS. EDGERTON: And I'm not seeking to tender the document on the
12 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
13 MS. EDGERTON:
14 Q. Now, you just mentioned a report by a debriefing team, and the
15 document you have on the screen in front of you is entitled "Final
16 Debriefing Report - Gorazde Hostages," dated 3 July 1995. That is a
17 UK document. Is this the type of debriefing report you were referring
19 A. Yes, this is the one, and this summarises the information that
20 the debriefing team had assembled having interviewed all the hostages.
21 MS. EDGERTON: Could we move over to the next page of this
22 document, please, to give the witness a chance to review it more fully.
23 Q. Now, in this paragraphs 7, 8, 9, 10, and down to 16 of this
24 document, General, we see drop points for the witnesses from Rogatica, to
25 Sokolac, Knezina, Vlasenica, Milici, and Bratunac.
1 MS. EDGERTON: And if we could go back over to page 1 of the
2 document for the moment.
3 Q. Paragraph 6 of this document notes:
4 "The hostages were taken from the northern -- taken from the
5 northern OPs were dropped off and detained at various locations in small
6 groups of varying numbers on a northerly route which extended from
7 Visegrad to Zvornik, while the hostages taken from OP2 were all taken to
8 the same location in Bileca."
9 Now, that's a lot of locations, General, but I wonder if, based
10 on your tour in Bosnia, you have some familiarity with those locations
11 and are able to identify the expanse of territory they represent?
12 A. Indeed. This represents almost the entire Drina valley on
13 Bosnian territory, from Bileca, which, if my memory is correct, is in
14 Herzegovina, all the way up to Zvornik, which is on the frontier between
15 Bosnia and Serbia. So it's a stretch of between 80 and a hundred miles.
16 Q. Now --
17 MS. EDGERTON: Could I have this document, please, Your Honours,
18 as the next Prosecution exhibit.
19 JUDGE KWON: There is no opposition from the Defence? Yes, as a
20 contemporaneous report we can admit it.
21 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2150, Your Honours.
22 MS. EDGERTON:
23 Q. I'd like to go on now, very briefly, to something that's already
24 been exhibited. P2137, which is an order from the VRS Main Staff to
25 General Milovanovic, numbered 03/4-1037, dated 27 May 1995, on the
1 reception and deployment of UNPROFOR members in the corps' area of
3 Now, General, have you seen this document in preparation for your
4 testimony here today?
5 A. I have.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 MS. EDGERTON: Then could I ask that we move over to point 5 on
8 this document, which is in the next page in both languages.
9 Q. Now, point 5 of this document directs, among other things, the
10 command of the Drina Corps to place captured UNPROFOR troops and members
11 of the other humanitarian organisations at the installations in its area
12 of responsibility.
13 Just a quick question in this regard. Is this also consistent
14 with the experiences as you understood them of your peacekeepers who had
15 been taken hostage?
16 A. Yes, it is, and when I compare this document with the debriefing
17 report and the experiences of those who were captured, it's a clear
18 indication that this -- that this activity was being ordered and
19 co-ordinated at a high level, because we're looking at a distribution of
20 hostages across at least -- at least three, if not four, army corps
21 throughout that area. And since corps commanders do not normally give
22 orders to each other, that order has clearly come from the next level up,
23 which is the General Staff.
24 MS. EDGERTON: Could we go, please, over to 65 ter 03903, which
25 is an order dated 27 May 1995, from the Drina Corps command to all units,
1 specifically referring to the order we've just looked at, P2137.
2 Q. Now, General, have you had a chance to see this document in
3 preparation for your testimony here today?
4 A. I have.
5 Q. Now, point 1 of this document orders the command of the
6 5th Podrinje Light Infantry Brigade to capture and disarm UN members who
7 were blocked in the Sjenokos sector, confiscate their vehicles and use
8 them as their combat hardware, and store personal weapons until further
9 notice. That's point 1 and 2, actually.
10 Does this order correspond with what happened to your OPs on
11 Sjenokos as you noted in your written evidence?
12 A. Indeed. And to enlarge a little on this, it corresponds with the
13 accounts that we were able to pick up by radio from the OPs that were
14 being surrounded at the time, and with what emerged in their debriefing,
15 which we've already covered. I later saw some of the vehicles, I saw one
16 personally which had been painted in Bosnian Serb camouflage and
17 modified, and I saw another on film being used at Srebrenica.
18 We later, about a year later, in fact, recovered the captured
19 vehicles and the belongings of the soldiers, their helmets, their body
20 armour, their weapons, and they were returned to the unit.
21 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Edgerton, if it is convenient, is it okay to
22 have a break now?
23 MS. EDGERTON: Yes, I'm sorry, Your Honour. I lost track.
24 JUDGE KWON: No, no, not at all. We'll break and we'll have a
25 break until 11.00.
1 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
2 --- On resuming at 11.00 a.m.
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Edgerton. Please continue.
4 MR. ROBINSON: Excuse me, Mr. President.
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
6 MR. ROBINSON: Just if I could introduce to you
7 Sarah Jane Dobson, from the University of Queensland in Australia, who is
8 assisting us. Thank you.
9 JUDGE KWON: Welcome on board. Yes, Ms. Edgerton.
10 MS. EDGERTON: Thank you, Your Honours. I wonder if we could
11 have that document that we left dealing with, the 65 ter number 03903,
12 back up on the screen, please. Great. No. Not so great. Could we see
13 an English version eventually. Thank you very much.
14 Q. General, just to finish with this document, I'd like you, please,
15 to have a look at point 3 of this Drina Corps command order which directs
16 the command of the 5th Military Police Battalion to take over the
17 captured UNPROFOR members and relocate them, and just by way of summary,
18 relocate them individually, in groups of two, and in one case a group of
19 four, to depots, corps and firing positions of corps and brigade
20 artillery groups and command posts.
21 Now, once again, does this order correspond with the experiences
22 of your peacekeepers who had been taken hostage as you understood them
23 and had reported to you?
24 A. Yes, indeed. They, as far as possible, recorded their
25 experiences in the debriefing reports and reported that they had been
1 placed in military installations where they were in no doubt that they
2 were being used as human shields, which as members of a UN force with a
3 mandate which had been put in place by the United Nations, I believe to
4 have been highly improper, and indeed, were they prisoners of war, it
5 would have been against the terms of the Geneva Conventions.
6 MS. EDGERTON: Your Honours, could I have this document, 03903,
7 as a Prosecution exhibit, please.
8 JUDGE KWON: That will be admitted, yes.
9 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2151, Your Honours.
10 MS. EDGERTON: And I'd just like to pull up one final document,
11 please, 65 ter number 16505, which is a situation report from the
12 VRS Main Staff, dated 28 May 1995.
13 Q. And is this, General, another document that you've looked at in
14 preparation for your testimony here today?
15 A. It is.
16 MS. EDGERTON: Could we then move, please, over to, I think, page
17 6 of the English translation of this document, and as I recall, page 3 of
18 the original version of this document. And I may have spoken in error as
19 regards the original version. If you could keep going. We'll look for
20 Roman numeral II, and I think it might be page 4 in the original version.
21 And I'm incorrect in that regard. If we could go back a bit, please.
22 Sorry, that was my mistake, because I was looking for a
23 Roman numeral, but in fact, on the original version it's the second
24 paragraph from the bottom of the page.
25 Q. But focusing for our purposes right now on the English
1 translation, the last sentence in this paragraph that's headed "Situation
2 on the Ground" reads:
3 "During the day, the Drina Corps captured 27 members of UN forces
4 (Englishmen) and 4 armoured vehicles."
5 Now, could I just ask you, your statement notes -- or in your
6 written evidence you refer to the capture of 33 members of UN forces. Do
7 you see a discrepancy in this document, and if so, could you explain it?
8 A. Yes, I see two discrepancies. The first is that they are
9 described as Englishmen whereas, in fact, they were Welsh, and doubtless
10 they were very offended at being so described. That is understandable.
11 The other discrepancy, which is really what you refer to, is the
12 difference between the 33 who were captured and the 27 noted here. I
13 believe the difference relates to six soldiers who were injured when
14 vehicles rolled off mountain roads, and these six soldiers were taken to
15 hospital, and that accounts for the difference.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 MS. EDGERTON: I wonder if this might be the next Prosecution
18 exhibit, please?
19 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
20 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
21 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. I was told that it is already in
22 evidence. Could you give the -- could the Court Deputy give the number
23 of the exhibit.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. That's P2138.
25 MS. EDGERTON: My apologies, Your Honour. Things are just moving
1 so fast I wasn't able to keep up.
2 Perhaps we could move to actually one further and final document,
3 65 ter 13392, that I don't believe has been put before the Court as yet.
4 Could we have an English version, please.
5 65 ter 13392 is an order from the VRS Main Staff, dated
6 2 June 1995, on the release of members of UNPROFOR.
7 Are you having difficulty locating the translation? Can you try
8 under 65 ter 13569. I think we're -- oh, thank you.
9 Q. Now, General, is this another document you've looked at in
10 preparation for your testimony here today?
11 A. It is.
12 Q. Now, you having spoken about the six soldiers who were injured
13 when their vehicle rolled off mountain roads, I'd like to take you to
14 paragraph 2 of this document, which is on the next page in English.
15 This document, at paragraph 2, orders the Drina Corps command to
16 release six detained UNPROFOR members who were being treated at the
17 hospital of the Main Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska, and I wonder
18 if you see any relationship between this document and the six injured
19 soldiers you were just discussing.
20 A. I do. I was made aware that the soldiers had been injured
21 through radio conversations with a Serb army liaison officer who was
22 located with the brigade headquarters in the Serb municipality of
23 Gorazde, and he told me that the soldiers had been injured and had been
24 taken to hospital and would be cared for. And I asked that since they
25 were injured, that they should be released as soon as possible, and I
1 later learned that they had been released, and I believe these to be the
2 same men.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MS. EDGERTON: Could I tender this, please, as a Prosecution
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes, that will be admitted.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P2152, Your Honours.
8 MS. EDGERTON: Your Honours, I have no further questions of
9 General Riley in chief.
10 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
11 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
13 Cross-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
14 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, General.
15 A. Good morning, Dr. Karadzic.
16 Q. Thank you for having met with the Defence. Our meeting will
17 certainly help us to be more efficient and to shed more light on many
19 First of all, I would like to tell you that I'm very pleased with
20 your book the "White Dragon," in which you described the tour of the
21 Welsh Royal Fusiliers in Gorazde. I'm sorry I did not read it before our
22 interview. With your permission, I'm going to be using it during the
23 cross-examination. I have to say that you are an excellent writer and
24 that in very few words you have said so much, and once again I would like
25 to thank you for this excellent book.
1 General, I would like to show you the last document again. It's
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would like to call it up in
4 e-court for the benefit of the witness. Thank you.
5 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. General, I have recalled the document just to clarify certain
7 terminology. Here you say UNPROFOR members who were taken prisoner.
8 In our language, when you say "prisoner," that means that the
9 person was arrested, and when you say "detainee," that's a prisoner of
10 war, although this "war" bit is implied rather than actually uttered.
11 Do you agree with me? In your mind is there a distinction
12 between a prisoner and a prisoner of war or a detainee?
13 A. A prisoner of war, as I would understand it, would be somebody
14 who was taken captive from an opposing force, and since we were members
15 of an international force not opposed to either side, I do not believe
16 that members of my battalion could have been taken prisoner of war.
17 Q. Thank you. I just need to clarify the terminology, and the
18 interpreters can confirm for the Trial Chamber that a prisoner is
19 somebody who was arrested for a crime committed in civilian life, whereas
20 a prisoner of war is a result of war.
21 And now, Witness, I would like to see not if General Zivanovic is
22 right or not, but let's see how the Drina Corps perceives you, not you
23 personally but NATO and UNPROFOR.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would like to call up P2149 to
25 illustrate that. The document has just been admitted.
1 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. I would like to draw your attention to the part which starts with
3 the words "NATO aircraft," where it says that on the 25th of May, 1995,
4 in the afternoon, NATO aircraft, which are a part of UNPROFOR, conducted
5 operations against facilities of the Army of Republika Srpska. And then
6 a description follows, and now it says the Army of Republika Srpska
7 responded by conducting operations against selected targets. However,
8 Muslim forces in co-operation with UNPROFOR are expected to continue
9 operations against military targets in Republika Srpska in order to raise
10 the level of combat readiness in units to the highest level and to
11 successfully repel attacks and so on and so forth.
12 Do you see that the commander of the Drina Corps actually sees a
13 complete unity or a complete alliance between UNPROFOR, NATO, and Muslim
15 A. The commander of that corps may choose to present matters in that
16 way, but that is not, in fact, a reflection of the true situation. NATO
17 aircraft were not part of UNPROFOR. They were acting in support of
18 UNPROFOR. And to my knowledge, there was never any occasion, certainly
19 in the area that I was deployed, where our forces would have fought
20 alongside either the Bosnian Muslim government forces or any other force.
21 Q. Thank you. I'm not questioning the accuracy of this. This is
22 just the perception of the Serbian Army. Do you know that on the 27th,
23 UNPROFOR sent a report, maybe it was on the 28th, and in that report it
24 stated that the Muslim army started exploiting the results of NATO
1 MS. EDGERTON: Your Honour.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Edgerton.
3 MS. EDGERTON: Could we have a reference for that?
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Could you give the reference, Mr. Karadzic,
5 for that statement.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It was a report or a telegram sent
7 on the 28th of May. I believe that the telegram has already been
8 admitted. We had it displayed earlier on, and in that telegram it says
9 that the Muslim forces -- maybe by the end we will be able to locate the
10 document, but in any case, it has already been shown in this courtroom.
11 UNPROFOR reported from the ground and said that the Muslim forces had
12 started exploiting the results of NATO air-strikes.
13 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, when asked by the Prosecution, you are
14 expected to give the reference to that document instead of making a
15 lengthy statement on your own.
16 I take it you do not have the reference with you at this moment.
17 Then I think you can rephrase the question.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Are you aware of the fact, did you know, General, that the Muslim
21 side had celebrated NATO air-strikes on Serb positions and hailed them,
22 as a matter of fact, and that they launched activities in order to make
23 the most of the results of those air-strikes?
24 A. Since no NATO air-strikes had taken place in or around Gorazde
25 within my area of responsibility, I'm not aware of any such activity.
1 Q. Thank you. Can I draw your attention to your statement? You
2 were familiar with the situation in Gorazde as it was in 1994, and you
3 speak about that in the fourth paragraph of your statement; right?
4 A. Is it possible to see the statement on the screen, please?
5 JUDGE KWON: If we can print out the statement of the witness,
6 why don't we give them in hard copy, but in the meantime, we can upload
7 his statement.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, that's the statement. We need
9 page 2.
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. It says here: "In the spring of 1994." You said that there had
12 been fierce battles around the city between Muslim and Serb forces, and
13 that --
14 JUDGE KWON: Why don't we collapse the Serbian version and zoom
15 in to the English version. Yes. I think it will be more convenient for
16 the witness.
17 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
18 JUDGE KWON: And, Mr. Karadzic, you have no problem because you
19 have it with you.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] No, no.
21 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. You were informed -- or, rather, you knew where you were headed
23 for, and you knew that there had been fierce battles around the city
24 after the first round of air-strikes; right?
25 A. I had been briefed during our preparation for the tour, and
1 conversations with people on both sides around the area informed me that
2 that had been the case. I could see physical evidence of fighting, but
3 clearly, I was not there on the ground and cannot verify any details
5 Q. Thank you. On page 3 in the same statement, I hope you have it
6 in hard copy, you say that in 1995, in the month of May, when you were
7 already there, you had received information from various sources, and you
8 will find it in the fourth paragraph of your statement.
9 [Previous translation continues] ... "[In English] May was a
10 busy month."
11 [Interpretation] Which showed that the legal of troops in that
12 area on both sides was more or less equal. Is that right?
13 A. I believe so.
14 Q. Thank you. Yesterday during our conversation, we arrived at the
15 conclusion -- or, rather, it was your conclusion that there were about
16 5 to 6.000 troops in the 81st Division in Gorazde; right?
17 A. No. We believe that there was somewhere between 8 and
18 11.000 soldiers in the 81st Division, of whom the divisional commander
19 had weapons for about 6.500. That was our assessment.
20 Q. Thank you. If you take into account the fact that they operated
21 in shifts, it would be fair to conclude that each soldier was equipped
22 with arms when they were actually on duty.
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Thank you. Was the 81st Division divided into brigades,
25 companies, and lower-ranked units?
1 A. As far as we could understand, the division was divided into
2 five light brigades which were assigned to ground-holding in various
3 sectors, and they had one manoeuvre brigade called the Manevarska
4 Brigade. Within each brigade there would usually be at least three
5 battalions which would be divided into three or four companies.
6 Q. Thank you. They also had their separate staffs as well as
7 logistics bases, staff units, and so on and so forth; right?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. In view of the size of the enclave, do you believe that that was
10 a rather dense level of militarisation in that enclave?
11 A. I believe that it -- the defenders had mobilised all the
12 resources that they could, as any prudent military commander would in
13 order to assure the defence of their territory.
14 Q. Thank you. Well, I had in mind the size of the area and the
15 number of 11.000 troops. I would say that they were quite densely
16 deployed, that the area was quite heavily militarised; right?
17 A. As you yourself just said, they operated in shifts, so that the
18 maximum that might be on duty at any one time would be considerably less
19 than that, 6.500. And given the size of the enclave, no, I do not
20 believe that that is an overly dense deployment. When I made an
21 assessment of what we needed should the UN or even NATO have to defend
22 this area rather than deter, I came to the view that it would require at
23 least one division with supporting troops from corps level, which would
24 be, if anything, more than the Bosnian side had deployed.
25 Q. Thank you. Well, let's not speculate. I'm not a soldier. Am I
1 right in saying defenders need few troops than are needed by those who
2 attack the area, as it were?
3 A. I'm sorry, I don't understand the question.
4 Q. If one side were to defend itself and the other side to attack
5 the area, would you say that those who attacked the area would need more
6 troops than the defenders?
7 A. Thank you. Yes, I understand now. It is usually considered that
8 if the troops are equipped to an equal level, a defender -- I'm sorry, an
9 attacker would be wise to muster at least 3:1 in terms of superiority.
10 However, the attacker has the ability to concentrate force against one
11 particular point if he has a force ratio which is in overall terms
12 inferior. He is able to achieve a local superiority. And of course, in
13 the case of Gorazde, the 81st Division had very little in the way of
14 heavy weapons, such as mortars, artillery and tanks, and I believe that
15 the Serb side held an extreme superiority in those heavy weapons which
16 would serve to build up the required superiority.
17 Q. Thank you. But even what they had in terms of heavy weapons and
18 mortars, they certainly didn't keep that on the front line
19 [indiscernible] kept it behind the lines in the enclave.
20 A. Many of the heavy weapons that I observed on the Bosnian side
21 were mortars, which have a limited range of only up to 5 kilometres. I
22 only saw one or two field artillery pieces and I only ever saw one tank.
23 So some of them would have been behind the front line. The smaller
24 mortars would have been very close.
25 Q. Thank you. On page 3 you say -- or, rather, during our interview
1 you agreed, and you also mentioned it in the book, that Serbs were around
2 12.500 in Gorazde and that they had been driven out of their own
3 neighbourhoods as well as the suburbs on the right bank of the
4 Drina River; correct?
5 A. I was told that by people from both communities, and since the
6 account was much the same from both communities, I believed it.
7 Q. Thank you. You also observed that they only escaped across the
8 confrontation line, and outside the confrontation line there were Serb
9 villages who received these refugees, and these refugees continued to
10 fight around Gorazde. Is that so?
11 A. I believe that to be the case. And inside the enclave, there
12 were also large numbers of refugees from the other community who in the
13 same way resisted.
14 Q. Thank you. On page 3, we're again on page 3, last paragraph,
15 says that you had been warned in advance about NATO air-strikes which
16 occurred in the end of May, and you made sure that in the period before
17 the air-strikes your liaison officer did not cross the confrontation
18 line; is that correct?
19 A. Correct. As I answered earlier, the warning about air-strikes
20 was no more than 24 hours ahead of the event.
21 Q. Thank you. On page 5, you say that the situation -- that's
22 paragraph 4. You say that on the 29th of May, 30th, 31st, and
23 1st of June, the situation deteriorated because of heavy fighting all
24 around you; correct?
25 A. Correct.
1 Q. Thank you. Further down on page 6, you say that the Serb side
2 attacked the Hercegovina Corps on the right bank, trying to take that
3 area on the right-hand side and east of the Drina River, and that you
4 helped them.
5 [Previous translation continues] ... "[In English] I think it is
6 no exaggeration to say that our defence of the east bank until the
7 Muslims could mobilise and secure Mala Biserna," the hill, right, on the
8 right bank?
9 A. It is an important hill, the position of which dominates the
10 town, the safe area and total exclusion zone. I considered it vital
11 ground to be held, and if it was not held by me or by the defenders, then
12 the safe area was no longer safe and that I would be failing in my
13 mission if that was not the case.
14 Q. [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 "[In English] It is not an exaggeration that this action has
16 saved the town. Had we been pushed off, the Serbs could have destroyed
17 Gorazde with fire."
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. [Interpretation] Thank you. That's still some kind of
20 speculation. Do you know that it was very difficult to stop Serbs
21 50 metres from their own homes, from freeing them? Do you know that
22 these situations were very emotionally charged?
23 A. As the commander responsible for deterring attacks on the safe
24 area and for maintaining the total exclusion zone, I'm afraid I had not
25 the luxury of emotion. I was given a mission which I was obliged to
1 fulfil to the best of my ability. And on that day, it was clear to me
2 that my soldiers were being attacked very heavily by the
3 Hercegovina Corps side, and having formed the professional view that the
4 Mala Biserna feature was vital to the security of the safe area, I could
5 do nothing else but to defend it.
6 Q. Thank you. And you believe that it was your mandate to repel
7 Serb attacks against Gorazde; correct?
8 A. What my mission said was to deter attacks on the safe area. My
9 rules of engagement allowed me to use lethal force if I was attacked to
10 defend myself and our mission, which is what, in fact, happened.
11 Q. Now, General, there is a misunderstanding there between the
12 UNPROFOR and the Serb side in Bosnia. To defend oneself and one's
13 mission are two different things.
14 Do you remember that General Mladic always used to say, "If my
15 soldiers shoot at you, feel free to return fire"? Do you recall that?
16 A. I do not recall that.
17 Q. On the other hand, we seemed to agree yesterday that you were
18 neither able to nor did you prevent the Muslim division from attacking
19 Serbian villages around Gorazde; correct?
20 A. I'm not sure that we did agree that. During the period of time
21 up until this episode began in May, I was not aware that there had been
22 any Bosnian government forces, Muslim forces, attacks from out of the
23 enclave. Had I known of any, I would have done my best to prevent them.
24 The attacks that took place in this area were counter-attacks,
25 and they all took place after the total exclusion zone had been violated
1 by the attacks of the Serb side on the 28th of May.
2 Q. Thank you. Then we will have to present a number, a great number
3 of documents where the Serb side claims and proves that those were, in
4 fact, Serb counter-attacks in response to attacks from the enclave. But
5 you couldn't, nor did you ever prevent such attacks from the enclave.
6 JUDGE KWON: That was an unnecessary statement on your part.
7 Please refrain from making such statements. I will indicate whenever you
8 make them. Please carry on.
9 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. But the fact remains that in all that time you were there, you
11 never prevented any action by the 81st Division against Serb settlements.
12 A. I'm not sure that that is a fact, and therefore it does not
13 remain, as I've said before. Until the 28th of May, I know of no attack
14 that took place by the 81st Division out of the enclave, and therefore
15 there was nothing for me to prevent. Had I become aware of any event,
16 and I believe I would, then I would have done my best to prevent it.
17 Q. Thank you. You say on page 6 that during your tenure there, that
18 the Royal Wales Battalion escorted about 78 convoys into Gorazde and it
19 fought 60 separate combat incidents; is that correct?
20 A. I believe so.
21 Q. Thank you. Is it the case, then, in the light of the fact that
22 NATO was making air-strikes at the invitation of the UNPROFOR commander,
23 that we can view this paragraph written by Zivanovic where he says that
24 his corps was attacked by the joint forces of NATO and the Muslim forces?
25 Perhaps not in so many words. Perhaps it was phrased differently.
1 A. That was certainly not the case in my area of responsibility,
2 which is the only area on which I'm able to comment.
3 MS. EDGERTON: And, Your Honour, if I may, that question is --
4 actually, I wasn't quite quick enough. It's assuming facts not in
5 evidence, in my submission.
6 JUDGE KWON: Now the issue's moot in light of the witness's
8 Let's move on, Mr. Karadzic.
9 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. I'd like now to shed some light on the structure of the UNPROFOR
11 forces in Gorazde, namely the British Battalion. Were there any
12 SAS members in that BritBat?
13 A. Yes, there were. There were a total of eight divided into
14 two teams of four.
15 Q. Thank you. On page 6 we saw there were about 60 separate combat
16 incidents. Did you also have any combat incidents against the
17 Bosnia-Herzegovina army?
18 A. You mean the Bosnian government Muslim forces.
19 Q. Yes.
20 A. Yes. On at least two occasions. On one occasion, a convoy of
21 vehicles was fired on by the Bosnian side in the area of Osojnica bridge.
22 This was in late April. And towards the very end of my mission, when the
23 British government had announced that at the termination of our tour of
24 duty we would not be replaced, and during the initial period of
25 withdrawal, we were attacked in some force by elements of the
1 Bosnian government army. I do not believe this to have been an official
2 policy, I believe it to have been a local initiative, but the attack did
3 take place.
4 Q. Thank you. In the same paragraph, the fifth paragraph on page 6,
5 you say that on August 28, news came that NATO had begun air-strikes --
6 no. In fact, they withdrew on the 28th of August, but you received news,
7 and you say:
8 "[In English] This had the potential to attract Serb reprisal in
9 response. Had this occurred, we would have been stranded in Gorazde.
10 Additionally, we had been warned we were facing a serious attack by
11 BH renegades who were redoubling their efforts to foil our retreat. We
12 had been guaranteed the assistance of General Mladic in a meeting he had
13 with General Smith and myself. Mladic was true to his word. Despite
14 fierce Muslim attack aim at blocking our movement, we were able to
15 extract from Gorazde and out through Serbian territory without a loss of
16 a single life."
17 [Interpretation] Is all this correct?
18 A. Yes, there are two issues there, I think. The first is that we
19 were aware, as we began the final phase of our withdrawal, that we faced
20 the likelihood of another Bosnian side renegade attack. In the first
21 attack we had killed some of their soldiers, and we knew that their
22 families, in particular, wanted revenge, and for that reason I did not
23 wish to get embroiled in a large battle and wished to disengage and leave
24 the area in accordance with my orders.
25 We also knew that there had been an incident in Sarajevo, but I
1 did not know the details, and I did not know that the -- that there were
2 NATO air-strikes at that point, because those air-strikes did not take
3 place until after we had arrived in Belgrade, in Beograd.
4 Q. Thank you. With your leave, we will go through your book to
5 identify these various incidents.
6 Did the Royal Welsh Fusiliers co-ordinate with the Muslim army to
7 secure UNPROFOR members on the right bank so that Serbs do not capture
8 them? Did you have that kind of co-operation with them?
9 A. No, we did not co-operate with them. We held liaison with them,
10 as indeed we had liaison with the Serb side. But as a UN force, we were
11 there to -- in support of the UN mandated mission and not to fight
12 alongside or co-ordinate with either of the factions.
13 Q. But still, you secured the right bank for them, preventing Serbs
14 from freeing their own homes. Were they grateful to you for keeping the
15 right bank safe for them when they were unable to resist?
16 A. The defence of the right bank was nothing to do with preventing
17 Serbs from freeing their homes, as you put it. It was everything to do
18 with deterring attacks on the safe area, with responding to a violent
19 attack mounted on my force there, and preserving the total exclusion
21 I did not have the force available and the weaponry available to
22 hold that ground, which I've already described as vital, for an extended
23 period, and I knew that the only people who could defend it was the
24 Bosnian Army, and therefore I had a responsibility to defend it as long
25 as I could and then let that force from the Bosnian Army assume the
1 defence. It is, after all, the responsibility -- the first
2 responsibility of any government to defend its own people, and you know
3 that, and that's what I had to do. It was all to do with the safe area
4 and the security of the civilian population in that safe area.
5 Q. Thank you, General. Did you know almost all the Serbs out of
6 those 12.500 who stayed in Gorazde -- you probably know how many stayed
7 behind, and you probably knew them all.
8 A. I was aware of 11 ethnic Serb people in the enclave, and I didn't
9 know them. There may have been more, but I was only aware of 11.
10 Q. Thank you. Out of these eight SAS members, were there any
11 forward air controllers?
12 A. Yes, there were. Both of the two teams of four contained two men
13 who were trained as forward air controllers.
14 Q. Thank you. May I now call up 1D3036. That's your book that I
15 can only praise, and I feel there are not enough compliments. Is this
16 the cover page?
17 A. Yes, it is.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The page numbering is different in
19 e-court, so I kindly ask for everyone's indulgence while I find the page
21 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Edgerton, do you by any chance have a hard copy
22 of the book?
23 MS. EDGERTON: No.
24 JUDGE KWON: No. Let's proceed with the e-court.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] On page 8 of the book, and it could
1 be 4 or 5 in e-court. Pages 8 and 9. Can we turn to those pages.
2 That's the right page.
3 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
4 Q. In paragraph 2, you say that the -- that a 500-strong UN garrison
5 lay some 80 miles from the nearest UN troops, and that UN garrison was
6 maintained there with the consent of both Bosnian and Serbs, something
7 not always understood at home. In Britain, the nature of these relations
8 were not sufficiently understood in Britain. And because of the need to
9 maintain consent for its presence, its convoys are liable for inspection
10 by the Serbs on their route.
11 A. Correct.
12 Q. Then you say that many convoys have indeed passed.
13 Do you agree that your presence there had the consent of both
15 A. Yes, I do.
16 Q. And I suppose you agree that under international law, we were
17 entitled to set conditions under which aid would pass to the other side
18 through our territory.
19 A. If that was agreed with the UN, that is so. Consent from both
20 sides, however, is rarely an absolute, in my experience. It is a
21 relative. It varies from time to time, depending on the circumstances,
22 and it varies at different levels of a command. At your level, I'm in no
23 doubt that you had reached agreement and consented to the force. That
24 did not mean that all of your subordinates necessarily agreed with that
25 and would do anything other than make it difficult for these supply
1 convoys to pass.
2 Q. Thank you. Can we now see page 11. And I believe you will agree
3 that soldiers frequently object to the decisions of politicians in -- in
4 military matters. Isn't that the case in all armies?
5 A. They may not like it, but in every army that I've served in,
6 orders are orders, and the political element has primacy, and soldiers do
7 as they're instructed by their political masters or they cease to be
9 Q. I would like to draw your attention to the right-hand side,
10 page 11, the second paragraph which starts with "On April 16th." And now
11 in this paragraph you were saying that Srebrenica was declared a UN safe
13 "[In English] ... was not matched by resources for their defence,
14 nor was the disarmament plan ever poorly implemented -- properly
16 [Interpretation] Do you remember that when it comes to Gorazde,
17 no agreement was ever reached on the boundaries of the safe area, nor was
18 the area every properly demilitarised?
19 A. To deal with the disarmament and demilitarisation aspect first,
20 as I understand it, the area was not determined or described as a safe
21 haven, because the conditions for being a safe haven are a guarantee of
22 complete security in return for total demilitarisation. The area was
23 designated as a safe area. There was indeed no geographical description
24 of that. I was never able to get any description, and nor was
25 General Smith. His guidance to me was what I went on and his guidance to
1 me was that the purpose of the safe area was to protect the civilian
2 population so far as it is possible to do so in a war.
3 Q. Thank you. Can we go to the following two pages, 12 and 13. I
4 would like to draw your attention to page 13, the last paragraph thereof.
5 "[In English] Then came the real business. If any further Muslim
6 fire took place, this would be the signal for the Serbs to fire on the
8 [Interpretation] You knew that fire was opened from within the
9 town and that Serbs returned fire.
10 A. I think as my account there makes plain, we were quite sure that
11 fire had not been opened from the town, that none of our observation
12 posts or liaison teams had heard any such fire at all.
13 Q. However, the paragraph says differently; right?
14 A. No, I don't think it does. I think what it reports is an
15 exchange of views between me and the Serb side in which an accusation was
16 made from the Serb side that fire had been opened from inside the town.
17 I did not believe that to have been the case, and I made it clear that it
18 had been wrong for the Bosnian side to use me, the UN force, as a shield
19 from which to launch aggression, and I formed the view that this
20 accusation was a false one and was going to form the basis of a
21 justification for the shelling of the safe area.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] And now can we go to page 16. One
23 more, please. Yes.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. You remember Podkovacev Dol as a locality. I would like to draw
1 your attention to this:
2 "[In English] The patrol had been out for two days. Based on an
3 abandoned house in the village Podkovacev Dol and was actually packing
4 its kits ready to leave when a sniper fired at the sentry. The sentry at
5 once returned the fire in response. A number of Serb positions opened up
6 with heavy MG fires. So heavy was the fire that the house began to
7 disintegrate. The patrol commander ... Nightingale deployed the whole
8 patrol to suppress the hostile fire ..."
9 [Interpretation] And then on the following page. Whose sniper
10 was it that provoked that response on your behalf?
11 JUDGE KWON: We should remain on that page.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, we should remain on that page,
13 page 17.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. General, was it ever established whose sniper provoked your
16 response to which the Serbs opened fire from heavy artillery?
17 A. You'd have to question Lieutenant Nightingale or one of the
18 soldiers who was actually present since I am -- since I am summarising
19 their account. They, however, were very clear that the fire had come
20 from the Serb side of the confrontation line.
21 Q. With all due respect, General, if that had come from the Serb
22 side, why didn't they start with the heavy artillery fire? Were the two
23 lines close to each other in that area?
24 A. Well, since neither of us was present, I don't think that we can
25 accurately engage in a reconstruction of this engagement.
1 Q. Thank you. On page 17 you say this:
2 "[In English] I can only guess that Hugh Nightingale's patrol
3 must have killed some Serbs."
4 [Interpretation] However, let's agree that we cannot establish
5 that. It seems to me, however, that the Serb side was taken by surprise
6 when you opened fire at them, that the sniper hadn't been theirs and
7 that's why they responded so fiercely.
8 And now, General, on page 17, where it says after about an hour
9 reinforcements arrived, along with the company commander, Major Philip
10 Jones. And then the crisis escalated, and you tried to exchange messages
11 with the Serb side. Do you remember that?
12 A. Yes, I do. I remember contacting the liaison officer in the
13 brigade headquarters in the Serb municipality of Gorazde and asking him
14 to relay the message to the brigade commander concerned, who was in a
15 different corps, telling him that there was an engagement in progress
16 with the UN force and that it should cease. And the message I got back
17 was that the brigade commander concerned knew that it was the UN force
18 and did not care and would not stop the engagement.
19 Q. Thank you. Obviously they did kill some Serbs, and that's why
20 the whole thing continued.
21 General, did it ever happen that your troops found themselves
22 among the Muslim troops on the front lines?
23 A. Not -- no. When we patrolled, we patrolled between the lines.
24 The observation posts were between the lines, and to reach the
25 observation posts we would merely pass through either the Bosnian lines
1 or indeed the Serb lines.
2 JUDGE KWON: As I indicated, Mr. Karadzic, I have to intervene
3 this time again. You made a statement which is unanswered by the
5 General, the witness said -- the accused said, "Obviously they
6 did kill some Serbs, and that's why the whole thing continued."
7 Do you have any comment on that?
8 THE WITNESS: As I said in the account which is written there,
9 what I said was I can only guess that. So it was -- I was trying to
10 rationalise why the next patrol should have come under such heavy fire
11 immediately, and I can only believe that the previous engagement resulted
12 in a death on the Serb side and that, therefore, they wished to take
13 revenge. But that is a guess.
14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Now I would like us to
16 look at pages 24 and 25. Yes, that's the page.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Please pay attention to the passage under the asterisks.
19 "[In English] Just on the southern side of Gorazde is a village
20 called Vitkovici."
21 [Interpretation] And now you continue to explain that many
22 Muslims live there, there were both soldiers and civilians, and that one
23 of the largest schools in the district was there. Just across the Drina
24 were the Serb lines, which overlooked the village, and in many cases
25 occupied by soldiers who had lived in Vitkovici but were forced to leave.
1 And you continue to say:
2 "[In English] It is a place where feelings run high."
3 A. That is correct.
4 Q. [Interpretation] This is what I meant when I spoke about
5 emotions. I did not have in mind the professionals of the
6 Welsh Fusiliers. Do you agree with me that it was difficult to manage
7 and control people who could see their houses across the confrontation
8 line, and you did notice that feelings run high over there?
9 A. Feelings may have run high, but international law prevents
10 attacks on -- I'm sorry, prohibits attacks by military forces on
11 civilians, and if any soldiers were attacking civilians, which was the
12 case here, then the military commanders on the spot should have taken
13 steps to prevent it by removing, perhaps, the soldiers whose feelings
14 were running high and replacing them with others who could be more
15 dispassionate. I do not accept that any amount of emotion justifies the
16 action that was being taken in that village.
17 Q. We agree, General, but do you also agree that soldiers, both on
18 the Muslim and Serb sides, that they had been civilians only until
19 yesterday and that they simply wanted to defend their houses? They were
20 not professional troops. And you will agree that there is a big
21 difference between professionals and former civilians?
22 A. I do not believe that the law would make such a distinction. If
23 somebody is wearing a uniform and under military discipline, they're
24 subject to military law. And everybody, whether they're a military
25 person or civilian, is surely subject to international law and bound to
1 obey -- and bound to obey it, just as in this case.
2 Q. General, with all due respect, I'm not trying to justify
3 anything. I'm just trying to understand or make both of us understand
4 what kind of troops there were on both sides. Were they professionals or
5 former civilians who fought for their houses? Did you encounter
6 situations where people fought in civilian clothes, not in uniforms?
7 A. I sometimes saw a mixture of military and civilian clothes, but I
8 do not recall seeing in the Gorazde area anybody in the line on either
9 side who was wearing only civilian clothes.
10 I should qualify that. I shouldn't say that I never saw anybody
11 armed on either side who was in civilian clothes. I did see working
12 parties digging trenches on both sides wearing civilian clothes, but they
13 were unarmed.
14 Q. And now can we look at page 38 -- or, rather, pages 38 and 39 in
15 your book. The end of the passage which starts with: "Because of the
16 fuel situation ..."
17 "[In English] Because of the fuel situation, resupply of the OPs
18 and change all the -- of personnel had to be done on foot by the -- and
19 the Serbs have taken to engage patrols with small-arm fire. This is
20 unlikely to be a co-ordinated policy. More likely is that usual mix of
21 indiscipline, drink, and boredom."
22 A. And what is your question?
23 Q. [Interpretation] I was waiting for the interpretation. That's
24 why I paused. My question is this: Does this reflect the truth, and
25 does this corroborate the fact that the troops were not professional
1 troops but, rather, civilian reservists?
2 A. It -- it probably does and I would agree with you that far, but
3 if you are suggesting that that makes it somehow acceptable, then we must
4 disagree, and I would have said in this case it was the responsibility of
5 the many professional officers that I knew to be with the Serb forces to
6 have prevented it.
7 Q. Thank you. As I said, General, this is not to justify things but
8 an attempt to understand the whole situation, and I see that you also
9 noticed that those were just localised incidents and not something that
10 had come as a co-ordinated policy from a central level.
11 A. At this stage, which is April, yes, I would agree with that.
12 Q. And now can we go to page 41. On the 14th of May, 1995, you say
14 [Previous translation continues] ... "[In English] ... that the
15 Croatian attack caused strong feelings among the Serbs where Slavonia was
16 a designated UN protected area, and the Serbs' anger was caused by the
17 failure of the United Nations as they see it to deter or prevent the
18 attack. The Croatian -- Croatian use of the air-strikes caused special
19 anger, and the Serbs pointed out that if they had used aircraft, NATO
20 would have been quick to respond. Clearly the Serbs see a parallel
21 between impasse in Croatia and the east Bosnia enclaves and perceive the
22 UN to be acting in a way which is not impartial. One can see the Serb
23 point of view, and it -- it has merit. The answer are, of course, that
24 the UN mandate is quite different in Croatia from that in east Bosnia and
25 that the UN is not in former Yugoslavia to enforce anything."
1 [Interpretation] Do you agree, General, as a good writer and as a
2 good general, that there are no minor injustices as opposed to major
3 injustices, that each injustice is actually a major one, and that the
4 Serbs believed that they were subject to a major injustice only two weeks
5 after the fall of Western Slavonia; right?
6 A. As I said in that account, I can understand the Serb point of
7 view, and I would go with you on the point that you -- that all sides in
8 a dispute have a right to the -- the same sort of response provided that
9 the legal mandate is the same, and indeed that any injustice seems like a
10 major injustice when you are upon the receiving end of it.
11 Q. Thank you. And now can we go to pages 44 and 45. The last
12 paragraph on the left-hand side, page 44.
13 [Previous translation continues] ... "[In English] As the
14 vehicle drove under the old railway bridge at Osanice, the Serbs opened
15 fire from bunker position on high ground across the Drina. Many rounds
16 struck at Saxons, so the vehicle commanders closed down their hatches and
17 returned the fire. Moments later, the Muslims joined in and fired a
18 rocket-propelled RPG-7 grenade at the first Saxon. This fortunately
19 missed and it exploded on the road some 15 metres from in front of the
20 vehicle. The commander, Lieutenant Llewellyn, and his second in command,
21 Corporal Parry, then had the difficult task of suppressing the hostile
22 fire, while also using their vehicle to shield the unarmoured police
23 Land Rover from the heavy fighting -- heavy weight of incoming fire."
24 [Interpretation] And then the next paragraph:
25 "[In English] It is always regrettable when soldiers on
1 peacekeeping duty have to engage either side, but when an outrageous and
2 unprovoked attack like this is made, there can be no alternative but to
3 respond in a robust and professional manner. The actions of the patrol
4 were of the highest order and made possible the safe extractions of the
5 civilian police from one of the most hazardous places in Bosnia. It is
6 also clear that the -- this attack was co-ordinated and planned by the
7 Serbs and probably had the sanction of at least a brigade commander. The
8 action by the Muslims, whom we are here to assist and at whose request
9 this action was carried out, was nothing short of disgraceful."
10 [Interpretation] General, you were helping the civilian police
11 here, and you saved them from the action of -- of the police; right?
12 A. This -- first of all, could I point out that this is an account
13 written by Major Richard Westley and not by me, and secondly, that the
14 escort was being provided to the United Nations civilian police and not
15 the Bosnian civil police.
16 Q. Thank you. Do you know that the Bosnian police or the Muslim
17 police, rather, actually was the cause of most harm for the civilians,
18 the Serb civilians who had fled Gorazde and that the police always
19 engaged in combat, that the police was part of the armed forces?
20 A. I'm sorry, you've -- you've presented me with an account by
21 another officer of a particular episode which involves the UN civil
22 police and not the Bosnian civil police, so I'm unclear as to why you're
23 asking me now about the Bosnian police who were not involved in this
25 Q. But it doesn't say here that it was the UN civil police. Were
1 there any UN civil police in Gorazde at all?
2 A. If you'd go, please, to the third line of the first paragraph of
3 that -- of that account, "Attack on Osanice," you will see that it says:
4 "On May the 17th, B Company was asked to escort a UN civilian
5 police vehicle from Gorazde to Osanice."
6 Q. Yes. Thank you, yes. Now I see it. And do you know that the
7 Bosnian police engaged in combat and that it was actually the Muslim
8 police that had chased Serbs out of Gorazde?
9 A. Since that took place before my presence on the ground, I can
10 neither confirm or deny that.
11 Q. And now can we go to the following page. Your soldiers were
12 injured because the vehicle actually swerved off the road; right?
13 "[In English] The captured soldiers were not threatened and --"
14 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Are we on the correct page?
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Yes, the left-hand side, in the middle, it says:
17 "[In English] The captured soldiers were not threatened and were
18 allowed to collect their equipment before being taken and escorted to the
19 Serb headquarter in Visegrad. En route, one of the Saxon vehicles slid
20 out of the road, injuring six British and one Serb soldier."
21 [Interpretation] Is that correct? Was that the cause of injury;
23 A. Yes. Yes, it was. That was my understanding at the time, and it
24 was confirmed in the debriefing reports of the soldiers concerned
1 Q. Thank you.
2 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, I note the time. It's time to take a
3 break. How much longer do you have after the break?
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] And how much time have I used so
6 JUDGE KWON: I haven't checked it yet. In any event, then we'll
7 have a break for half an hour and resume at 1.00.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I won't use all that.
9 --- Recess taken at 12.30 p.m.
10 --- On resuming at 1.01 p.m.
11 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, if I could --
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
13 MR. ROBINSON: -- introduce to the Chamber Amina Noor, who is a
14 student at the University of Amsterdam.
15 JUDGE KWON: Welcome.
16 Yes, Mr. Karadzic, I was told that you have spent so far
17 an hour and 20 minutes. You will have about 40 minutes to conclude your
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I believe I'll manage
20 even earlier and then it's my treat to the Prosecution. I'll give them a
21 couple of minutes from my time.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. General, would you kindly look at the next page on the screen,
24 the page on the right, number 47, where you talk about 33 fusiliers who
25 were taken captive [In English] not hostage. [Interpretation] That's
1 what we say, captive, not hostage.
2 And you say there were no victims, no one injured apart from the
3 six who got injured in a car accident.
4 "[In English] The next few days we were able to keep a rough
5 track on them through the Serb liaison officer until, after five days,
6 the first 11 were released. I spoke to them once they had reached Split,
7 and all confirmed that they had been treated correctly, well looked
8 after, and not threatened. Those injured in the vehicle accident
9 received proper medical care. I have been informed this morning that a
10 further 17 have been released, and I hope to speak to them shortly. I am
11 quite certain the remaining five are in no danger and that they will
12 be -- they will in due course be freed."
13 [Interpretation] Is that so?
14 A. Yes, that is quite so.
15 Q. And it follows from the book that you were fairly certain that
16 your men were in no danger at all; correct?
17 A. I have never had any issue with the way that they were treated,
18 and I never had any reason to suppose that they would be harmed by the
19 Serb soldiers who held them captive.
20 Q. Thank you. [In English] I'm afraid I've lost some pages. I ask
21 you for the indulgence, a few seconds.
22 [Defence confer]
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I've found it. The
24 book's excellent, but it's not very well bound, so I'm losing pages all
25 the time.
1 Can we now see page 67, please, 66 and 67.
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Now, you say here that you were confident that:
4 "[In English] ... the business of our withdrawal was soon
5 settled. The Serbs would assist us to withdraw via Belgrade.
6 General Mladic gave the orders at once and appointed a liaison officer,
7 asking of us only that we remove all the weapons and vehicles which had
8 been brought in since the arrival of the Duke of Wellington's Regiment in
9 April 1994. To this readily agreed since it was in any case our
10 intention. We then adjourned for some Serb hospitality, a magnificent
11 lunch and so --" no problem, "and to date, Mladic has been true to his
13 [Interpretation] Now the next example.
14 "[In English] I was less certain about the reaction of Muslim
15 side and, indeed, no sooner had the first convoy of loaders arrived to
16 begin the removal of heavy plants and vehicles, when obstruction began.
17 Muslim government ministers even went so far as to suggest publicly that
18 the British Battalion on which the enclave has depended for every
19 mouthful of food during the past year and a half would only be allowed to
20 leave if all the vehicles and weapons, the property of our government no
21 less, were placed in a weapons control point."
22 [Interpretation] Now let me not read this whole paragraph.
23 You had problems with the Muslim side that demanded your
24 equipment and the property of your government to be left behind; right?
25 A. That's what they demanded.
1 Q. Do you remember that the Army of Republika Srpska continually
2 asked that the UNPROFOR refrain from bringing in too many vehicles, too
3 much ammunition and fuel into the enclave precisely because we feared
4 that, and eventually our fears materialised? That's what happened.
5 A. I recall always being under restriction for the amount of supply
6 as I could get to keep my operations going.
7 Q. Yes, but doesn't this paragraph clearly show that the
8 Serbian Army's fears that Muslims might abuse your equipment were
10 A. I think that it does not justify interfering with necessary
11 supply to a UN force, even though I would accept that they were fearful
12 that equipment could be stolen and misused.
13 Q. Did something similar happen also to the Ukrainian Battalion?
14 Their equipment was taken over by the Muslims and turned against the
16 A. That is indeed the case. The Ukrainians allowed themselves to be
17 surrounded and disarmed, and their vehicles and weapons were indeed taken
18 by the Muslim side, something which I was very angry about, as the force
19 commander, but was unable to reverse. And I was determined, absolutely
20 determined, that that was not going to happen again.
21 Q. Thank you. You say here that the Serb liaison officer asked you
22 by radio if you needed any assistance, and you thought it was a joke, but
23 do you accept that from his point of view it was serious and honest?
24 A. Yes. I -- what the account says was not that I thought it was a
25 joke, because I was quite sure that he was serious, but it was black
1 comedy, indeed, that after the hostage-taking and the fighting that had
2 gone on earlier that I should -- I should go so far as to ask one faction
3 to join with me in fighting another. I was not there to do that, and the
4 last thing I wanted was to be the catalyst for more fighting. So I
5 replied that it would be best if the Serb side remained out of this
6 particular affair.
7 Q. On page 65 -- if we can see that page. That's the page on the
8 right. Could you please look at the last two paragraphs.
9 "Actually, this incident is in keeping with the attitude being
10 displayed by the Bosnian Muslims towards the UN all over the country.
11 [In English] Convoys obstructed, even those carrying aid. Bases blocked,
12 soldiers threatened. Here in Gorazde we have experienced all sort of
13 harassment. Not from the Serbs but from the people who depended on us to
14 risk our lives, breaching the Serbs' mine fields every time a UNHCR
15 convoy comes in. This is conveniently overlooked. But this is nothing
16 when compared to the continued harassment of the Ukrainians."
17 [Interpretation] And then the last sentence.
18 "[In English] It gives some idea, I think, of the almost
19 intractable problems which have to be solved every day in the face of
20 unbelievable ingratitude and deceit."
21 [Interpretation] Now, is that the painful part of your experience
22 of that departure from Gorazde?
23 A. It's one of many painful memories of a painful time, and as I
24 think the account makes clear, I was extremely angry, and indeed, I think
25 everybody was, at the attitude of the Bosnian side in return for what we
1 had -- what our country and the UN had done. I can only believe that
2 they felt in some way that they were being abandoned and that this policy
3 might help to change the situation to their advantage, but it was, in my
4 view, a very misguided way to proceed.
5 Q. Thank you. Can we agree that all these members of the
6 Royal Welsh Fusiliers who had been captured were at that time in active
8 A. I'm sorry, I don't quite understand what you mean. All the
9 soldiers who were captured during the hostage-taking episode in May or --
10 or are we talking about something else?
11 Q. I mean everything that you just said except the reference to
12 "hostage." Were all your men at that point in active service?
13 A. Yes, they were all regular soldiers, professionals.
14 Q. Thank you. Did any of your soldiers who had been taken
15 prisoner -- did Karl Roberts, in fact, tell you that during his detention
16 he had been informed by the Serbs that he was a prisoner of war?
17 A. He did report that he was a prisoner of war. That does not make
18 him so.
19 Q. All right, but it's not in dispute that he had been informed by
20 the Serbs that he had the status of prisoner of war; right?
21 A. The fact that he was told that is not in dispute.
22 Q. Thank you. Thank you, General. I hope we will not be seeing
23 each other in the next war, because there will be no next war. It was a
24 pleasure to talk to you. Thank you.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have finished, Your Excellencies.
1 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Karadzic.
2 Ms. Edgerton, do you have re-examination?
3 MS. EDGERTON: Just on one small point, if I may.
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes, please.
5 Re-examination by Ms. Edgerton:
6 Q. General, at page 68 of the transcript of today's proceedings, do
7 you recall discussing your patrols engaging with Bosnian Serb forces in
8 small-arms fire exchanges and Dr. Karadzic saying the following:
9 "General, this is not to justify things but an attempt to
10 understand the whole situation, and I see that you also noticed that
11 those were just localised incidents and not something that had come as a
12 co-ordinated policy from central level."
13 And your answer was:
14 "At this stage, which is April, I would agree with that."
15 Do you remember giving that evidence?
16 A. I do.
17 Q. Did the situation you were discussing then change after April?
18 A. Yes, during the hostage-taking that took place in May, it was
19 clear from the sequence of events and the reports that I received
20 afterwards and what we have seen subsequently from what happened to those
21 people who were captured, that that aggression must have been
22 co-ordinated at a higher level and was not simply a localised incident.
23 MS. EDGERTON: Nothing further, Your Honours.
24 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Ms. Edgerton.
25 One thing I wanted to clarify with you, Mr. Karadzic, is that is
1 it your intention not to tender those parts put to the witness from the
2 book authored by the witness?
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm sorry, and thank you for
4 reminding me. I would rather like to tender these passages, and if the
5 Trial Chamber doesn't mind, perhaps we could tender the whole book, but
6 at least those pages that I read from.
7 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Edgerton.
8 MS. EDGERTON: Well, I'd object to the whole book, Your Honour,
9 but no objection with respect to those pages. I just wanted to note that
10 pages 38 and 39 don't have any date reference on them, and perhaps it
11 might be useful to all of us if we could get a couple of pages further
12 than that that might indicate the date of that page or that entry.
13 JUDGE KWON: I take it that could be arranged outside the
15 MS. EDGERTON: I think so. Page 24 and 25, and I think page 15 as
17 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. There is no position from the Defence
18 on -- so that will be done. So that will be given the next Defence
19 exhibit number.
20 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Exhibit D678.
21 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Well, that concludes your evidence,
22 General Riley. I thank you on behalf of the Tribunal and the Bench for
23 coming to The Hague to give it. Now you are free to go and please have a
24 safe journey back home.
25 THE WITNESS: Thank you very much, sir.
1 [The witness withdrew]
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Mr. Tieger, where are we in terms of witness
4 MR. TIEGER: We have no witness available for the remainder of
5 the day, Your Honour, and in fact, the next witness will not be ready to
6 proceed until Friday morning. That's a consequence, as the Court I'm
7 sure is aware, of the fact that KDZ200 fell ill and was unable to
8 testify, and in addition to the pace, rather unprecedented, of the
9 proceedings which could not be anticipated, and it was too late to
10 accelerate the testimony of any additional witness.
11 Before we adjourn, however, I would like to move into private
12 session to continue a discussion raised earlier also in private session.
13 JUDGE KWON: Let's deal with the scheduling issue first. You
14 referred to two circumstances. I have -- were you not put on notice as
15 to those such circumstances in advance?
16 MR. TIEGER: No. I would say at best the Prosecution was advised
17 of the possibility that there could be some acceleration of the pace, but
18 indeed, to the extent that would have been a meaningful signal, and I
19 would say for purposes of witness rescheduling, something as tentative as
20 the communication we received late last week could not be held to do so,
21 that was largely contradicted by another signal we had during the course
22 of -- of a witness interview when the scheduling anticipated for the
23 first two witnesses by the Prosecution earlier was confirmed by the
24 Defence. So I think it would be an error to suggest that we were put on
25 notice that the pace of the proceedings as we've experienced it this week
1 was going to happen.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE KWON: We were concerned about the fact that we lost about
4 an hour and today -- another hour today, and we are losing about
5 five hours tomorrow. The Chamber understands the difficulties inherent
6 in the process of scheduling witnesses, and there are, of course,
7 particular circumstances this week which resulted in such a loss.
8 However, can I emphasise at this moment that it is the Prosecution's
9 responsibility to ensure that there are sufficient witnesses here so that
10 we do not have such unanticipated breaks, taking into account all of the
11 information available concerning the expected time for cross-examination.
12 So I wanted to give you notice in advance that in the future,
13 should we find ourselves in a position where we cannot sit because of the
14 absence of witnesses, without good cause, there may be situations in
15 which the Chamber will ask the Registry to count some or all the time
16 lost against the Prosecution's overall time allocation of 300 hours.
17 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, if I may, I certainly understand that
18 as a note of general concern on the part of the Court. I can advise the
19 Court that it doesn't, as a general principle, alert the Prosecution to
20 anything it wasn't aware of and hasn't focused on diligently since the
21 commencement of these proceedings. I hope it's no more than a note of
22 general concern about time lost and not a reflection of this particular
23 incident, because the unanticipated loss of time in this instance was the
24 result of wholly unanticipated factors that were outside, clearly outside
25 the Prosecution's control. So I didn't understand the Court to be
1 suggesting otherwise. Just a reminder that everyone's concerned about
2 time and everyone should do their utmost to ensure that we use our time
3 as efficiently as possible.
4 JUDGE KWON: Your understanding is correct.
5 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE KWON: Shall we go into private session? Just a second.
7 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Just a second. Could I add
9 something? The interviews I had with these witnesses helped me to
10 shorten my examination, and I believe part of the problem lies therein,
11 part of the problem we have with the surplus of time.
12 JUDGE KWON: Very well. We'll go into private session briefly.
13 [Private session]
11 Pages 10828-10829 redacted. Private session.
11 [Open session]
12 JUDGE KWON: Unless there are other matters to be raised, the
13 hearing is now adjourned. We will resume on Friday at 9.00.
14 And one further notice: I think that should be -- should have
15 been arranged, but that can be arranged. On Monday next week, I'm giving
16 you prior notice, we will be sitting from 2.30 to 6.30. And on Tuesday,
17 we will be sitting at the regular time, from 9.00 to quarter to 2.00, on
19 MR. KARADZIC: For me, regular is afternoon.
20 JUDGE KWON: We will rise. The hearing is now adjourned.
21 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.36 p.m.,
22 to be reconvened on Friday, the 28th day
23 of January, 2011, at 9.00 a.m.